EUROPE: Bartering for Oil

"Middle East financiers are buying technology," reads an ad in Milan's Corriere della Sera. "Encounter with the Middle East!" cries a come-on in Paris' Le Monde. Another ad in London's staid Financial Times crooks an inviting finger: "The Middle East wants to do business with you."

Not half so much as Europe wants to do business with the Middle East. When the price of oil for the nine nations of the Common Market leaped by $25 billion a year ago, the Continent nearly panicked. Recycling petrodollars—that is, borrowing money back from the...

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