We are all storytellers

August 22, 2019

OK so it has taken me a while, but I have finally found the time over the summer to read the excellent ‘Sapiens’ by Yuval Noah Hariri – a masterful sweep of human history, mixing anthropology, sociology and good old-fashioned storytelling. But his early section on collective belief systems in particular made me pause for […]

Boom or bust? What is really going on with Egypt’s economy?

July 31, 2019

“Egypt’s economy isn’t booming…it’s collapsing” says a former minister in Mohammed Morsi’s short-lived administration. “On the contrary, Egypt’s economy isn’t tanking…it’s thriving” counters a senior banker in Egypt. The correspondents of this exchange running across consecutive issues of Foreign Policy magazine make their own case based on recent macro-economic figures, debt levels in the country and the […]

Source of wealth indicators in the Middle East & North Africa

February 20, 2019

One of the areas where compliance teams can struggle is to establish and verify the source of wealth of an individual.  Even FATF regulations and EU AML directives acknowledge the difficulty of the exercise, calling for a risk-based approach and a balance between publicly-available information and voluntary disclosure by the client.  But for those sectors that handle high-value transactions, such […]

It’s the sources, stupid

April 5, 2018

As some of you will have noticed, this year is Diligencia’s tenth anniversary and in Nouri’s post about the early days of the company he set out one of the guiding principles of how we compile our company information, namely only using official sources. The emphasis we place on authentic company information is still absolutely […]

The Saudi corruption purge in 5 charts and tables

January 19, 2018

Mohammed bin Salman’s crackdown on corruption briefly reappeared on the radar of international media outlets this week with the news that Prince Muteb bin Abdullah, previously head of the Saudi national guard, had been released and that the Riyadh Ritz (pictured) had re-opened after being used as a luxury prison for those detainees with a […]

2017 in review – ClarifiedBy Diligencia (Part 2)

December 29, 2017

In our last post we focused primarily on Saudi Arabia and the impact of its domestic and foreign policy agenda over the course of 2017.  We now turn our attention to another major regional power, a country which has also had an eventful year. Iran 2017 in Iran was a story of two elections – […]

2017 in review – ClarifiedBy Diligencia (Part 1)

December 27, 2017

For a region used to turbulence and conflict, 2017 has been an eventful year for the Middle East by any measure.  The motor behind many of the year’s most eye-catching moments was Saudi Arabia which, under the growing power of crown prince Mohammed bin Salman (pictured), has not only embarked on a radical programme of […]