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On Monday, 03 December, Mr. Mohammed Sulaimani (MA), of the Department of General Studies gave a talk on "Saudi Aramco IPO: An International Political Economy Perspective". Mr. Mohammed Sulaimani obtained his Master in International Affairs, specifically in "International Energy Policy of the Middle East" from Pennsylvania State University.

This seminar analyzed the current announcement by Saudi Arabia to list a share of 5% of Saudi Aramco in international stock exchange markets. The talk also attempted to analyze the interaction between Saudi Arabia, as Aramco's sovereign shareholder, and international stock markets from international political economy theoretical perspectives. Mr. Sulaimani pointed out that in interdependent international economic relations, interactions between nation-states and private transnational actors can be perceived as a normal commercial interaction. However, he stressed that a sovereign transnational actor such as Saudi Aramco might have a different influence on nation-states. Furthermore, Mr. Sulaimani said that in a State-Owned Enterprise, the main shareholder is a sovereign state that has objectives in international investment decisions. By that, stock exchange markets impose laws and regulations to alter these objectives. Based on these theoretical frameworks, Mr. Sulaimani concluded that the Saudi government is influencing the laws and regulations of New York, London, and Hong Kong stock exchange markets through the power Saudi Aramco has as the biggest national oil company in the world.

This interesting and topical presentation was attended by both faculty and students. Mr. Sulaimani's talk prompted an interesting question and answer session.

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