Today, the petrochemical industry of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries provides no less than 10 percent of global chemical output by volume. Multiple factors underlie the creation of the industry over the past half-century. Far-sighted leaders courageously committed billions of dollars to develop world-class infrastructure. GCC nationals employed in petrochemical enterprises saw their apprenticeship and employment as a patriotic mission. International oil companies brought know-how and expertise. Government-directed ventures set the stage for the emergence of a flourishing private sector.
Successive chapters deal with the earliest beginnings of the industry, the creation and growth of Saudi Arabia’s SABIC, and the development of petrochemical enterprises in Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, and Oman. The final section reviews the state of the industry today, as it prepares for fresh challenges and opportunities.
Richly researched and written by a respected authority on the life of the GCC countries, Molecules, Mind and Matter sets the frame for all future analysis of this major aspect of modern culture.