Late 1973 was a time that changed the Gulf nations for ever. The benchmark for Saudi light crude went from US$ 3.011 per barrel on 1 October 1973 to US$ 5.119 per barrel on 16 October 1973. 1 The price continued to increase until 1980 when it hit US$ 42 per barrel at the start of the Iraq-Iran war. 2 There was a sudden realization of the worth of the region and of the ability to put money where the dreams were. Visions of an Islamic renaissance became powerful incentives to develop the industrial, agricultural and also social potential of each Gulf nation.