Gulf in the News – February 20, 2014

Iran, world powers tackle agenda for final nuclear accord

Source: Khaleej Times (Read full story)

The opening session on Tuesday was “productive” and “substantive”, they said. “The focus was on the parameters and the process of negotiations, the timetable of what is going to be a medium- to long-term process,” one European diplomat said.

Gulf states, Russia disagree on Syria

Source: Kuwait Times (Read full story)

There are growing attempts to depict the outcome of the Geneva II talks on the Syria crisis as a failure, which brings suspicion that those talking about a failure are secretly conspiring a military solution.

This is unacceptable for Russia, said Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. “Let’s wait until it’s (the talks are) over before we say that it is a failure,” Lavrov said in response to a question about the differences in opinion on Syria during the GCC and Russia ministerial meeting held in Kuwait yesterday.

Bahraini to die over cop’s killing

Source: Arab News (Read full story)

A court in Bahrain has sentenced one man to death and six others to life imprisonment for the killing of a policeman after a protest last year, local media reported on Wednesday.

Two other defendants were given sentences of five and six years in jail for their role in what state-run media have called a “terrorist attack … using an incendiary projectile” on the cop named Mohammed Aasef.

Kingdom plans SR236bn petchem investment

Source: Arab News (Read full story)

The Kingdom plans to invest nearly SR236 billion in new projects to stimulate petrochemical industry, a step seen to keep the Kingdom’s position as one of the best petrochemical players globally.

GCC to spearhead global economic growth in 2014

Source: Saudi Gazette (Read full story)

The report forecast that there will be growth of 3.2 percent across the international board much of it spurred by recovery in high-income economies.

This not only indicates a substantial improvement over the latest 2013 growth estimate of 2.4 percent but occurs against a backdrop last year where the World Bank had downgraded the GDPs of several economies.