Achieving the economic integration and supporting GCC private sector
The second target of GCC petroleum strategy necessitates the participation of the petroleum sector in achieving the economic and social stability in GCC states through adopting the following policies:
- Fulfilling the economic integration and bolstering common interests among GCC states through establishing join petroleum projects pursuant to their economic feasibility.
- Cementing the role of the private sector to participate in fortifying the petroleum industry in its various phases of establishing common projects for petroleum services and taking advantage of GCC financial houses and institutions of experience.
Definitely, the recent international financial crisis has proved the importance of the strategic studies and energy researches besides the need to found a GCC territorial center to be in charge of assisting the member countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council and the Secretariat-General in preparing studies related to the countries and the international economic groups in oil and gas exactly like cooperation with the European Union, China, Australia and International Commerce Organization.
The Council of Undersecretaries commended to issue a decision from the Higher Council to all petroleum and oil companies as well as companies working in the natural gas in the private and public sectors in GCC states to take part in establishing common development projects in GCC countries through common Gulf markets; however, it is allowed to focus on these companies through media. The decision is also to allow the GCC national companies to invest in the zones of privilege to be treated national ones.
GCC petroleum strategy
The Undersecretaries' Council approved updating the petroleum strategy provided to review it in terms of vision, message, goals and time during their tenth meeting which was convened in Kuwait in October, 2010. In addition, a draft should be submitted in the coming eleventh meeting paving the way to be forwarded to the Petroleum Cooperation Committee.
The GCC petroleum strategy was announced officially during the 22nd meeting of Petroleum Cooperation Committee which was held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on September 18, 1999. This strategy stems out from some main following pivots:
- To best utilize the petroleum resource as a principal resource of income, strategic commodity and main resource of energy in GCC countries.
- To achieve security and economic, political and social stability in GCC countries.
- To fulfill the principle of free market.
- To secure the local and international supplies from petrol.
- To provide stable cooperation between the producers and the consumers.
- To reinforce technology and develop knowledge and scientific research.
- To prioritize the environment's protection and safety.
The strategy also sheds light on the international political and economic status of GCC states as they are altogether considered one of the biggest oil stockpiles. The approved strategy considers also the internal and external petroleum relations of each country; therefore, the strategic vision has sought to accomplish a number of principal goals besides depending on some policies and practical procedures to be carried out perfectly.
The following table clarifies the GCC strategic goals as well as the required policies to apply them:
|To achieve the biggest possible revenue from the petroleum resource on the long run
- To reinforce coordination among GCC states in production and pricing field.
- To provide fair quota in line with any increase in the international demand on oil.
- To keep consuming petrol as a main resource of energy.
- To glorify the added value of the petroleum resource locally, territorially and internationally.
- To reinforce cooperation to develop the petroleum industries and fortify their competitive abilities among GCC states
|To reinforce the participation of the petroleum sector in the economic and social stability in the GCC states
- To secure petroleum revenues in the ordinary and exceptional cases.
- To fulfill economic integration through establishing common projects.
- To meet the needs of the local market in the ordinary and exceptional cases pursuant to a territorial emergency plan for GCC petroleum products.
- To fortify the petroleum sector’s role in support the other production sectors so as to augment its contribution in the local output.
- To reinforce the private sector’s role in developing the petroleum industry
- To convey the petroleum technology to establish integrated Gulf petroleum industry as well as supporting the scientific research.
- To rehabilitate the Gulf national personnel to bolster common cooperation in training field and exchanging experiences.
- To make harmony among the pricing policies of the petroleum pricing locally to control any differentiations in economic costs of various consumer sectors.
|To fortify the GCC petroleum sector’s participation in supporting the international political and economic role
- To increase the petroleum reserves and compensate the produced quantities of oil and fortify the GCC role as an international production organization.
- To stabilize the international oil markets and protect prices from fluctuation in coordination among the producers, the consumers and the concerned organizations.
- To Keep producing appropriate quotas to secure the international supplies so as to stabilize prices and markets.
- To encourage the GCC petroleum industry in providing the international economy’s with its needs from energy.
- To consider the GCC states among the countries of developing economies to take advantage of facilities and profitability which are granted by the concerned international organizations in this domain.
- To estimate the international analyses which the petroleum industry confronts to achieve the biggest possible interest for the GCC states.
- To augment the GCC states’ quota in the main oil markets and the promising ones.
- To bolster cooperation among the international economic organizations.
- To coordinate properly to market oil and its products in the international markets and compete in appropriate manner.
|To bolster cooperation between the producing and consumer countries in line with common interests
- To fortify relations between GCC countries and other exporting countries to keep the common petroleum interests.
- To cooperate with the producing and consumer countries in the field of research as well as developing the new technologies in various oil industry.
- To provide the importing countries with the necessary supplies from oil with regarding to the GCC international and territorial obligations.
- To invest in the related operations of producing oil in the main promising consumer zones through a way secures the demand on oil.
- To keep oil and its products away from any discriminated treatment in the main consumer countries such as imposing taxes.
- To keep the language of dialogue among GCC countries and the consumer countries to create common understanding among each other.
- To stress GCC keenness on preserving environment.
- To make balance between the requirements of preserving environment and development.
- To utilize the efforts of the GCC countries to preserve environment in accordance with their petroleum interests.
The GCC Committee of Oil Ministries Undersecretaries reviewed on October 9, 2010 during the meeting which was held in Kuwait the possibility of activating articles 5 and 12 of the unified economic accord of GCC countries which are interested in establishing common projects; however, the undersecretaries commended what follows:
- To urge the concerned authorities of the member countries to activate the third paragraph of article 5 and article 12 in accordance with regulations and laws approved and applied among the GCC countries.
- To hold a meeting or workshop for investors of GCC countries to tackle common investment opportunities in favor of institutions and companies of the private sector and national companies as well in oil and gas field.
Moreover, the private sector has been allowed to practice more petroleum activities pursuant to regulations and laws approved in this domain. In addition, procedures which can enable the GCC private sector to participate in developing the Gulf petroleum projects are being taken; these procedures include the following:
- To enlarge the participation of the private sector in implementing new petroleum projects.
- To provide facilities and ease procedures for the private sector's companies to penetrate the GCC petroleum industry.
- To increase the awareness of the private sector towards the available investment opportunities in petroleum industry field besides the required criteria allotted in this regard.
- To encourage establishing common projects between the private and government sectors
- To urge the companies of the private sector to rehabilitate the national personnel and increase their efficiency to meet the required criteria and requirements to take part in the petroleum industry's projects.
About the energy recommendations, the GCC undersecretaries agreed at seeking the assistance of a consultation office from GCC states to conduct a study about the possibility of unifying the prices of petroleum distillates and the impacts of differentiations in these prices on the GCC states' economies besides the ways of handling them. The undersecretaries agreed also at recruiting a team affiliated to the Secretariat-General to prepare mechanism about the consultative work. Moreover, the Secretariat-General is to submit its vision about its needs from the financial resources and manpower that is required to reinforce its role in this regard.
Meetings of climate change
Onthe international meetings concerning climate change, the undersecretaries of the Gulf Cooperation Council commended launching effectual participation in the conference which is alleged to be held in Cancun City, Mexico to exchange experiences among GCC states. They have also supported Qatar's demand to host (COP18) which is scheduled to be convened in 2012 to tackle the climatic change and the protocol of Kyoto.
GCC states, Asian countries and Turkey
The council also stressed the necessity of holding a specialized meeting in energy field among the GCC countries; in addition, it urges the energy team to circulate fields of cooperation recommended by the Turkish side to identify the appropriate fields which can be tackled in mutual meetings held between the team of energy of GCC states and its Turkish counterpart.
GCC petroleum media
Pursuant to the 28th meeting of the Petroleum Cooperation Committee which was convened in Doha On December 21, 2008 and the memorandum of the Secretariat-General and the minute of the first meeting held at the secretariat-general on 16-17 February, 2010 about petroleum media in GCC states, the GCC Undersecretaries have approved the following:
- To form a committee comprising specialists in petroleum media from the member countries and Secretariat-General.
- To gear up a strategy for the petroleum media in coordination with the GCC Petroleum Strategic Committee.
- To cement coordination and cooperation among GCC media about the petroleum media.
- To intensify coordination with the Arab and International organizations in petroleum media.
- To launch and update an electronic website linked with the site of the Secretariat-General so as to include all available oil activities, information, studies and researches of mutual interest about the Gulf oil field.
- The Petroleum Media Committee should coordinate and cooperate positively with the representatives of GCC media to spread copiously the oil culture.
- To set up a wide media data base to bolster the media communication and deliver information and publications on the Gulf and international level through news channels, journalists and academics…etc.
- To organize visits to specialists of petroleum media at GCC states to exchange experiences in media programs in this domain.
Territorial Emergency Plan for Petroleum Products
The GCC undersecretaries approved what has come in the results and recommendations of the 20th meeting of the Territorial Emergency Plan of Petroleum Products which was held in the headquarters of the Secretariat-General in Riyadh on 30-31 May, 2010. They discussed the ways of confronting any emergency in any of the GCC countries.
Varying Energy Resources
The GCC energy team has been instructed to study and follow up precisely the impacts of the resources of the alternative energy on the resources of oil and gas in the GCC states provided to include Ethanol.
Article 5 of the unified economic accord
This article of the accord which is related to the investment environment includes what follows:
In order to develop local and environment investment in the GCC states so as to provide an appropriate investment environment is characterized with transparency and stability, the member countries have to agree at the following procedures:
- To unify their organizations and laws concerning investment.
- To treat all investments possessed by GCC citizens in a one unified national manner.
- To unify the policies and regulations concerning the GCC stock exchange markets.
- To adopt unified specifications for all commodities in accordance with the principal system the GCC Specifications and Measurements Authority.
Article (12): Common Projects
This article necessitates supporting communication among GCC states in production and economies in addition to achieving integration and economic connection. However, the member countries are taking the necessary precautionary procedures to support, finance and establish common private and public projects including:
- To adopt integration economic policies among the GCC countries in the projects of the infrastructure and main services such as transport, communication, electricity, Information Technology and educational and touristic projects besides oil and gas industry.
- To establish the common projects on bases consider the relative advantages of the GCC states.
- To provide added stimuli for the private sector to establish join projects which can link the economic interests of GCC citizens.
- To eliminate the hindrances impede the common projects to be treated as national projects.