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Saudi King Salman’s ongoing visit to Asia, through which he hopes to attract Japanese and Chinese investment in Saudi Arabia, is another indication of how committed the country is to reforming its economy. This trip, along with a host of fiscal modifications at home and the impending initial public offering (IPO) of Saudi Aramco, the country’s national petroleum and natural gas company, underscore the Kingdom’s recognition of its need to escape dependence on oil—a realization that has come as a result of failed policies from 2014 to 2016 that forced Riyadh to accept the fact that its days of dominating oil markets are over.
Saudi Arabia’s strategy during the production war was to let the spigots flow in the hopes that doing so would undermine two other producers: Iran and the United States. Iran had always enjoyed a latent ability to wrest market control from Saudi Arabia,