Saudi Arabia was one of 12 countries placed at risk of coup d’état and insurrection in a 2016 terrorism and political violence map.
The Aon study, produced in partnership with The Risk Advisory Group, gave countries a score based on criteria including the risk of sabotage, commotion and rebellion.
It showed a rise in the number of countries with business-related perils due to coups, insurrection or war.
This year, the risk rating of countries including Saudi Arabia, Kazakhstan, Zimbabwe and Angola were increased due to concerns over coups or other forms of power seizure and uncertainties surrounding succession.
In the GCC, Bahrain was also ranked at high risk, one below the highest rank severe. Kuwait, Qatar, Oman and the UAE were ranked at the second lowest level in the five rank index.
Sub-Saharan Africa was found to have the highest number of countries with high to severe risk, following an increase in the risk rating of Angola, Burundi, Ghana, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
The Middle East had the largest number of terrorist attacks in the last year at 1,114, largely due to the activities of ISIL in Iraq and Syria, according to the study.
This compared to 799 attacks in South Asia, 491 in North Africa and 331 in Sub-Saharan Africa.
“This year’s Aon Terrorism and Political Violence Map shows a rise in political violence and terrorism risks for the first time since 2013. The threat of terrorism is critical, but sudden political change at the top as well as war can arguably be more catastrophic for business,” said The Risk Advisory Group head of intelligence and analysis Henry Wilkinson.
“These risks are less manageable and less foreseeable and have the potential for cascading political risk ramifications across a region.”