Latest articles from James Gavin

Kuwait navigates the oil hazards

Kuwait navigates the oil hazards

April 1, 2016

With its unresolved dispute with Saudi Arabia over the so-called 'neutral zone' rumbling on, record-low oil prices and the possibility of an Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries-imposed production freeze, Kuwait's oil industry is under pressure. Still, the country remains committed to investments in the sector.   


Resilient Qatar looks to further economic diversification

September 1, 2015

The drop in oil prices has not hit Qatar's economy particularly hard, and its central bank governor, Abdulla Bin Saoud Al-Thani, is looking to further diversification, a strong banking sector, infrastructure investment and closer ties with China to keep the country in the fast lane when it comes to economic growth.

Qatar a never ending success story

Qatar's never ending economic success story

June 1, 2015

With its guaranteed long-term liquefied natural gas revenues and ever-expanding array of foreign assets, Qatar boasts a profile that has set it apart from its Middle Eastern oil-exporting peers – even if it has found it necessary to curb some of its prodigious spending growth in the midst of weaker global oil prices seen in the past year.

Kuwait digs deep to raise energy stake

Kuwait digs deep to raise energy stake

April 1, 2015

Oil prices may have dropped, but Kuwait is investing heavily in the hydrocarbons sector this year in a bid to meet an ambitious production target. James King reports.

Investors look to capitalise on equity market uncertainty

July 2, 2012

As equity markets look set to stagnate for some time, investors want to know not just how to hedge volatility, but how to profit from it.

Islamic stability provides solid structures

Islamic stability provides solid structures

May 1, 2012

An increasing number of financial institutions from international banks to local specialist players are developing sharia-compliant structured products, offering investors limited downside risk and high returns. But as the uptake for such products increases, so does the pressure of ensuring that they are 100% sharia-friendly.

A little local insight

Middle Eastern banks: a little local insight

May 1, 2012

Local banks in the Middle East have continued to perform strongly despite the global financial downturn. The strategies of three such institutions – state-owned National Bank of Abu Dhabi, local-owned Qatar National Bank and retail franchise Emirates NBD – help to explain such a strong performance.

Kuwait pushes PPP agenda

Kuwait looks to private sector funding in PPP push

April 2, 2012

Now Kuwait has joined many other Gulf states in pushing through private financing across a range of sectors and overhauling its infrastructure, it boasts one of the Middle East's largest and most diverse public-private partnership programmes. But as the country's government opts for PPPs, will the banks follow?

Two-thirds of BLME's assets are from corporate business

Islamic banks eye corporate SME space

June 1, 2011

While Islamic financial institutions have been active in offering retail products and investment banking services, regular corporate banking has tended to fall through the gaps. Now banks are correcting the balance.


A tale of two centres

November 24, 2010

From Hong Kong to London, established global financial centres are looking to reinvent themselves as Islamic finance hubs and capture a slice of a fast-growing and still largely untapped market.

What impact did the global pandemic have on banks?

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