Hundreds of Gulf Arab industrialists began a two-day meeting here Tuesday, October 2, to draw up a joint policy to attract more foreign investment into the local developing industry sector.
The meeting, held under the banner "Opening up to direct foreign investment and its impact on industry in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states", will focus on the transfer of technology needed to develop local industry.
GCC Secretary General Jamil Al-Hujailan told the opening session that despite serious efforts made by the Gulf states to attract investment, their share was less than one percent of the world's foreign investments in the past 25 years.
Foreign investments in the six-nation alliance reached only $40 billion between 1975 and 2000, Hujailan said. "The GCC states are unique in their political and social stability which provides a safe environment for investment and a free economic system," Hujailan said.
The GCC groups Saudi Arabia with Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. Secretary General of the Gulf Organization for Industrial Consultation Muhammad Al-Mussalam said the GCC states have more than 7,000 industrial establishments with total investments exceeding $80 billion.
The industrialists will study a number of work papers illustrating the experiments of other Arab countries in attracting foreign investment. ― (AFP, Riyadh)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )