A much-delayed plan for a GCC customs union was given a boost yesterday at a meeting of regional finance ministers.
A "number of recommendations pertaining to the finalising of the GCC Customs Union" were made at the meeting, which took place in Abu Dhabi, according to a statement issued on behalf of the Ministry of Finance.
The statement did not give further details. The six GCC countries are preparing for a union over the next three years, which would abolish quotas and tariffs among member states.
That would effectively establish a free-trade bloc among GCC nations.
A series of recommendations was made at the GCC Financial and Economic Committee Meeting in Abu Dhabi.
Participants included regional finance ministers, the governors of the Gulf central banks, and Nemat Shafik, a deputy managing director of the IMF.
Although the IMF was represented at the meeting, participants said it is not seeking funds from the UAE to boost its resources.
"There is absolutely no discussion at this stage Ö between the IMF and the UAE in regard to participation in any recapitalisation," said Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, the UAE Minister of State for Financial Affairs.