Persian Gulf-based SWFs and Financial Hubs in Bahrain, Dubai and Qatar: A case of competitive branding
& Shatha Al-Aswad
Published: September 2012
Competitive branding between Bahrain, Qatar and UAE has occurred on different levels of investment through the medium of the Gulf State Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs). This has happened across a number of sectors: oil and gas, finance, real estate, automotive and entertainment, but Vision 2030 for the three states gives a sense of duplicating strategies. As they aim to diversify their economies and create jobs, they have also duplicated efforts, perhaps leading to a misallocation of resources. Does the Gulf really need three or four financial hubs? If it does, then theoretically – ceteris paribus – for all of them to function and thrive, there should be a high level of specialisation to avoid cannibalisation. In order to accumulate assets for future generations of their citizens the Gulf State SWFs need to coordinate efforts.