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Saudi's Five-Year Plan

April 21st, 2016

Episode 508 of 645 episodes

What's really happening inside Saudi Arabia? As Barack Obama touches down for a high-level summit this week, we look at the latest manoeuvres inside the Kingdom to combat its struggling public finances, including a $10bn bank loan - the first of its kind the nation has taken in 25 years. But with the collapsing global oil price, the Kingdom is running what looks like an unsustainable budget deficit. We speak to Courtney Freer, a research officer at the London School of Economics' Kuwait Programme, about Saudi Arabia's plan to refocus its economy away from its dependence on oil revenues. Also in the programme, the new Big Dry: we hear why Australian benefit claimants are now being denied alcohol at the shops. And the secret life of a footballer. Arsenal player Mathieu Flamini has spent eight years developing a pioneering bio-energy firm to save the planet without telling anyone. He joins us to explain why. (Photo: A Saudi man at the petrol pumps; Credit: Getty Images)

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