Kuwait Business: GCC Trade Laws in Brief

Kuwait Business: GCC Trade Laws in Brief Last updated on Tuesday 20th April 2010

Kuwait is a member of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) founded in 1981. The GCC has six members: Kuwait, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), Bahrain, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the Sultanate of Oman. Its supreme council is composed of the heads of state of those countries and chairmanship is held on an alternate basis.

The headquarters of the GCC is in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and it normally holds two sessions a year. Apart from the Supreme Council, there is a ministerial council of foreign ministers of the member states. The Arbitration Commission is assigned the settlement of any international dispute, while the General Secretariat prepares reports, drafts laws and regulations.

Provisions have been made for increased cooperation between the member states in the fields of economy & industry, banking, education and travel & shipping. For instance,

Nationals from the member states who work in legal, medical, financial, consultancy or any other such professional work can practice in any of the GCC states. Eventually it is anticipated that any GCC nationals will be able to fully own and set up projects within the member states.

There are no custom duties on Gulf-produced products, while foreign imports must pay some protective duties. Many joint ventures have been established in the industrial sector.

As a support service to economic and industrial joint ventures, a joint banking system is anticipated. It has been suggested that a unified plan to monitor economic activity, in order to manage state reserves, should be adopted.

Vehicle registration has been made valid between the states.

GCC port authorities allow storage of goods to be sent for transshipment by Gulf exporters in duty free areas.

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