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Rise of the Gulf 波斯湾崛起 2015年01月20日 13:35:56

Rise of the Gulf

Soaring ambition


Economic power and political influence are shifting to the Gulf. Can it last?

Jan 8th 2015, 14:26| From the print edition of The Economist



DUBAI likes to set records. It has the world’s tallest building (the Burj Khalifa), the largest shopping centre (the Dubai Mall) and the longest handmade gold chain (5.52km), to name but three. But beyond mere ostentation, the city-state has more substantial achievements to its credit. In the year to September Dubai airport overtook Heathrow in London to become the world’s busiest international hub, with some 68.9m passengers using it yearly.

迪拜喜欢打造世界纪录。它拥有世界最高建筑哈利法塔(the Burj Khalifa),最大购物中心迪拜购物广场(the Dubai Mall)以及长达5520千米的世界最长手工金链,然而得以命名的仅有三个。不过除了单纯的炫富,这个城邦里名副其实的成就也大有可观。截至9月,迪拜机场一年内大约接待旅客6990万人次,超过英国希斯罗机场(Heathrow)成为世界最繁忙的国际中心。

Oil wealth, geography, ambition and, it seems, canny investment, have turned Dubai into a major transit hub, especially for people and goods moving into or through the Middle East. Emirates, Dubai’s flagship carrier, is one of the world’s leading airlines. The Jebel Ali port ranks as the world’s ninth busiest. Dubai World Central, a logistics hub around a new airport, will be twice the size of Hong Kong island when completed. It is served by some of the world’s most modern roads. The United Arab Emirates (UAE), of which Dubai is one of seven federated components, is building a railway, part of a proposed $25 billion network connecting the six states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

石油财富,地势,野心,以及似乎精明的投资已让迪拜成为重要的运输中心,尤其是对于往来于中东地区的人和货物来说。迪拜一流的货运公司阿联酋航空公司(Emirates)是世界领先的航空公司之一。阿里山港则是世界繁忙程度第九的港口。新机场旁的物流中心迪拜世界中心(Dubai World Central)在建成后将有香港岛的两倍大。那里有一些世界上最为现代化的近岸锚地。迪拜是阿联酋(UAE)的七个成员酋长国之一。而阿联酋正在修建的铁路是斥资250亿美元打造的铁路网的一部分,该项目将把海湾合作委员会(GCC)的六个成员国连通起来。

Just as important, says Fadi Ghandour, the founder of Aramex, a Dubai-based logistics company, is that the city has excellent “soft infrastructure”. “Dubai has the right laws, and officials treat businesses like clients and implement what they say they will,” he says. One example is the customs-free corridor between the port and airport, which allows businesses to import and export raw materials without charge. There are no exchange controls and no taxes. Little wonder that DHL, a logistics company, ranked the UAE at number 12 in its annual global connectedness index, a measure of globalisation, one spot behind Hong Kong and ahead of France and Italy.

迪拜的货运公司中东快递公司(Aramex)创始人法蒂·甘杜尔(Fadi Ghandour)称:“这个城市极好的软基础措施同样具有重要意义。迪拜的法律完善。官员视商家为顾客,并且会去贯彻实行他们承诺过的事。”港口与机场间的免税通道就是个例子,那儿允许商家免费进出口原材料,并且没有外汇限制和税收。因此就衡量全球化水平的标准之一,即每年的全球连通性指数来说,少有人会惊异于在阿联酋位列十二的货运公司敦豪速递公司(DHL)会领先于法国,意大利,次于香港。

Due in part to Dubai’s growth, the UAE has become the region’s economic centre of gravity, which in turn has encouraged it to become more assertive politically (an ambition driven in part by Dubai’s neighbour, Abu Dhabi). “It is a defining moment for the GCC to take leadership,” says Nasser Saidi, a Lebanese economist based in Dubai. “Only the UAE has the energy, youth and vision to do so—and it seems keen to.” The UAE’s air force took part in the NATO-led combat mission over Libya in 2011 and is currently part of the coalition against Islamic State in Syria (though America continues to conduct the vast majority of strikes). Along with Saudi Arabia, the Gulf’s traditional power, it is pumping funds to prop up Egypt’s Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, the general who ousted the Muslim Brotherhood in 2013. The UAE has put pressure on other countries, including Britain, to curb political Islam.

某种程度上由于迪拜的发展,阿联酋已然成为该地区重要的经济中心,然后又促使其更有政治主见。这种野心部分是受到迪拜邻国阿布达比酋长国的驱使。常驻在迪拜的黎巴嫩经济学家纳赛尔·萨伊迪(Nasser Saidi)说:“这是海湾合作委员会取得领导权的关键时刻。只有阿联酋有精力,活力和洞察力做到这些,而且其似乎正有此意。”2011年,阿联酋的空军参加了针对利比亚的由北约领导的战斗任务。现在,它是抵抗叙利亚伊斯兰国联盟的一部分,尽管美国仍继续指挥着绝大多数的袭击行动。除了沙特阿拉伯,阿联酋也正投入大量资金支持埃及的阿卜杜勒·法塔赫·塞西(Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi)。这位将军于2013年驱逐了穆斯林兄弟会(the Muslim Brotherhood)[1]。为了约束伊斯兰政治力量,阿联酋已经向其他国家施压,其中包括英国。

Part of Dubai’s success is down to its location—between Europe, Asia and Africa—and its stability in a region plagued by war and stagnant politics. “It is the only safe haven for everybody in a sea of troubles all around,” says Mr Saidi.


Dubai’s rulers undoubtedly had vision. When Mr Ghandour founded Aramex in 1982 he located it in Ba


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