Middle Eastern regional Awards for Excellence
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Middle Eastern regional Awards for Excellence

Credit crunch? What credit crunch? This could be the Middle East’s favourite mantra. But for bad as well as good, bankers in the region are acutely aware of events in the rest of the world.

Record oil prices have helped push the GDP growth rate for the whole of the Middle East and North Africa region above 6%, despite severe political instability in some countries. As a whole, banks’ assets in the biggest economies of the Middle East grew by about 30% last year. Revenues have grown by at least as much – and often much faster.

Big developed-world financial institutions have come to the Gulf and begged for capital support. And it is not just sovereign wealth that has attracted the globe’s most senior bankers. Massive projects sponsored by some of the world’s richest governments are often extremely attractive for financiers.

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