Investing their capital overseas is one of the most important features of Gulf business. Some Gulf countries (such as Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar and Oman) have been working, for some time now, on maximizing their returns in emerging foreign markets, (Gas, energy, exploration and drilling), as well as from other sources including real estate companies, shipping companies and industrial establishments, and other such investments that benefit the economies of these countries. The Gulf countries sometimes operate projects outside their borders by signing investment deals with these countries for project management and operations, development of infrastructure, and training of local staff in return for agreed profit rates as part of the contracts or economic agreements between them. All this enhances the Gulf States’ increasing economic, security and diplomatic influence in Africa.
Following a ten-year period of relative political stability in the Gulf region, some Gulf countries began turning their attention towards the African continent to establish or manage economic projects as part of a resurgent foreign economic policy on the one hand, and the formulation of foreign, economic and diplomatic ties on the other hand. It also involved working jointly with the countries benefiting from the investment to create an environment that provides jobs and create an economic market away from oil to maximize revenues, diversify the economic environment and invest surplus profits in development projects, and last but not least, to perpetuate Gulf influence in Africa.