On the eve of the Syrian conflict, half a dozen Western oil companies were active in Syria. Among these, Royal Dutch Shell and Total E&P, were the major players. However, the country’s descent into chaos and the subsequent imposition of Western sanctions on the oil sector led to the freezing of their activities. By the end of 2012, all Western companies had suspended their operations in Syria, declaring force majeure and freezing their assets.
The local council of Jarabulus has introduced a USD 200 fee for Syrians living in Turkey who want to enter Syria - for a period of up to 30 days - through the Jarabulus crossing in northern Aleppo.
Although its capabilities and attacks have steadily declined since 2019, ISIS is using areas in northeast Syria to extort locals to offset their dwindling cash reserves.
This season, Syria's olive crop is estimated at 711,000 tons, a 13 percent decline from 820,000 tonnes harvested last year, while olive oil production is forecast at 91,000 tons.
Over the years, the relationship between Hamas and Syria has gone through significant transformations.
The Ministry of Finance's decision to withhold a SYP 562 billion loan to the General Establishment for Cotton Ginning and Marketing has led to acute delays in payments for cotton farmers.
Efforts to resurrect the Kirkuk-Banias oil pipeline have recently gained momentum. However, financial constraints and political and security instability continue to deter the project's implementation.
Damascus International Airport has resumed flights after being hit by an Israeli airstrike on October 12, while the Aleppo International Airport remains - at the moment of publishing - out of service after coming under Israeli fire twice, on October 12 and October 14. It appears flights in Aleppo airport will resume Wednesday 18, since two flights to Erbil and Sharjah are scheduled that day, according to Flightradar24.
Initial figures appear to indicate that Syria’s cement market, a proxy for construction activity, will contract again this year, despite the earthquake-related reconstruction needs and the investment that was expected after the Arab rapprochement with Damascus.
The ongoing Turkish retaliatory attacks in northeast Syria have severely affected oil, water, electricity, education, and health infrastructure.
Turkish-backed northwest authorities will hold the ‘First Investment Conference in Northwest Syria' in the Al-Rai Industrial City in December to attract investments to the region.
Turkey’s Council of Higher Education has recently accredited the Free Aleppo University located in A’zaz; with this move Turkey now recognizes the degrees of this university based in northwest Syria.
In September, a Syrian business delegation visited Greece and signed an agreement with the Piraeus Chamber of Commerce, one of the first such agreements at this level after more than a decade.
Some three-quarters of the revenues generated by the AANES come from crude oil production, a dependency seen as a weakness by officials from the administration.
Five months after Syria’s reinstatement in the Arab League, normalisation with Bashar Al-Assad seems to have yielded few Damascus concessions: captagon trade is surging, there is no sign of steps towards stabilisation, political reforms, or refugee return.
President Bashar Al-Assad’s handshake with Chinese leader Xi Jinping on September 22 marks a significant step in Syria’s reintegration into the global diplomatic sphere. Despite much fanfare, however, it is unlikely that promises by China's foreign minister Wang Yi’s “to take ties to a new level” will materialise into investments in Syria’s cash-strapped economy, given the recent decrease in China’s footprint in the country and Syria’s distressed business environment.
In the first eight months of 2023, Syria’s non-oil foreign trade reached USD 2.681 billion, including imports of USD 2.161 billion, according to a statement by Prime Minister Hussein Arnous before the Parliament on September 17.
Recent reports have sounded the alarm on the bleak water crisis that five million people in northeast Syria are facing. The roots of the water dilemma are entangled and protracted and the political instability in the northeast hinders efforts to design a comprehensive strategy to manage the dwindling water resources.
Amid rising food insecurity levels and wheat shortages, the Syrian government has recently contracted with Russian suppliers for the import of 1.4 million tonnes of soft wheat, which is used to produce bread. The wheat harvest across the country has improved this year but still falls short of the local demand.
On September 7, the Commander of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Mazloum Abdi, declared his forces had “full control” of the areas in Deir-ez-Zor province that had witnessed 12-day clashes between the US-backed SDF and some local Arab tribes.