First broadcast on BBC World Service in July 2006
In recent years, a number of Gulf countries have been making progress towards economic, social and even limited political reforms.
These advances are so rapid that many believe the Gulf - once seen as a relatively backward region - could one day eclipse the Arab world's more established centres of influence, such as Egypt and Lebanon.
The BBC's Arab Affairs Analyst Magdi Abdelhadi investigates how far these changes might go.
Part Four: Egypt
Magdi Abdelhadi travels to his native Egypt to find out why traditional Arab centres are faring less well than the more modern Gulf societies.
Should Egypt copy the achievements of places like Dubai and Qatar? Or is there another way for it to move forward?
The BBC Podcasts are for your personal non-commercial use only.
All title, ownership rights and intellectual property rights in and to the BBC Podcasts shall remain the property of the BBC or third parties.
You may not edit, alter, adapt or add to the BBC Podcast in any way.
The BBC Podcasts are made available by the BBC on an "as is" and "as available" basis and the BBC gives no warranty of any kind in relation to the BBC Podcast.
To the maximum extent permitted by law the BBC will not be liable for any loss or damage which you may suffer as a result of or connected to the download or use of the BBC Podcasts
See the full BBC Podcast: Standard Licence Terms here.