While the Persian Gulf may seem like an attractive place for U.S. investors, recent actions by high-ranking officials in Kuwait and Dubai reveal continued risks for foreigners — especially women — looking to do business in the region. Dubai’s freezing of a half-billion dollars in international investment and Kuwait’s illegal imprisonment of a prominent foreign businesswoman demonstrate the ways powerful individuals exploit the system for their own financial advantage.
Kuwait’s arrest and sustained detention of CEO Marsha Lazareva have reverberated throughout the global investment community. Lazareva is well known for her investment prowess. Her ability to succeed in a foreign, male-dominated culture was unlikely in the extreme.