As Saudi Arabia and Qatar opened the land borders between them on Saturday, the political and economic climate that prevailed following the recent Gulf summit in the Saudi AlUla region opened the appetite of Gulf and foreign investors to launch new projects with the beginning of 2021.
Dr. Abdul-Rahman Al-Zamil, a prominent businessman and former Chairman of the Council of Saudi Chambers, said he expected that the Gulf joint work would be further strengthened, as a united economic and political group. He added that Gulf countries would together face the challenges imposed by the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic and address its repercussions.
In remarks to Asharq Al-Awsat, he said: “The results (of the Gulf Summit) will fully stimulate the inflow of individuals, investments, goods and services between the countries of the GCC, which will drive the continued recovery of the Gulf economies, especially the growth and development of domestic and Gulf tourism and stimulate the demand for national products that are used for industrial activities.”
According to Al-Zamil, “the sectors that depend on government spending will be in better shape.”
He noted that government spending for the six GCC countries combined exceeded half a trillion dollars annually.
The GCC, he said, is considered one of the influential global economic blocs. The population of its six countries currently stands at 59.3 million, and intra-oil trade represents about USD 72 billion, which is equivalent to about 4.4 percent of the Gulf GDP in 2019.
Al-Zamil said that intra-exports of non-oil commodities represented about 25 percent of total exports of national goods, expressing hope that the outcome of the AlUla summit would increase market incentives and investment opportunities, as well as the volume of intra-trade to achieve better economic results in 2021.