The Federation of Gulf Cooperation Council Chambers (FGCCC) has rejected the formation of a Gulf-Jordanian business council on the grounds that this step has negative consequences, including financial and administrative burdens on the Treasury Secretariat of the Union, according to the Al-Iqtisad newspaper.
Instead, the Secretariat is content with only having bilateral councils between Jordan and Morocco and each GCC state, in addition to establishing specialised technical committees between the GCC countries and Jordan and Morocco.
Khalil Khonji, who is the Chairman of the FGCCC, explained that this decision was made during the meeting of the executive board last week in Doha, in accordance with their previous decision back in 2011 to reject forming any joint international and Gulf business groups.
He pointed out that it is difficult for the Gulf States to establish business councils with their counterparts from Jordan and Morocco all at the same time and in the same place, so the union has decided to have bilateral councils instead, in addition to establishing specialised technical committees between the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and the other two countries to discuss joint economic issues and to submit them to the boards of the bilateral business councils that represent the FGCCC.
Khonji also noted that the Secretariat will announce the invitations to participate in the meetings for the technical committee, which are looking to devise detailed action plans for cooperation with Jordan and Morocco.
He pointed out that every Gulf State has joint business councils with Jordan and Morocco by means of their chambers of commerce, and that the existence of these councils forms a platform to discuss and debate mutual economic issues. He also added that the bilateral business councils do the job and contribute to the emergence of effective economic companies.
He also said that it was not necessary at this time to create a new economic entity between the six Gulf states and Jordan and Morocco. Moreover, there are already other entities, such as the General Union of Arab Chambers and the Islamic Chamber of Commerce, that provide opportunities to meet with business councils in Jordan and Morocco.
The GCC had tasked the FGCCC with studying the feasibility of establishing a Gulf-Jordanian and a Gulf-Moroccan committee at its meeting in late 2011, as a part of an action plan that included increasing the volume of trade exchange, removing tariff and non-tariff barriers, and the establishment of joint ventures in accordance with the proposed mechanisms, such as organising joint workshops, conferences, and promotional seminars on investment opportunities, and the exchange of delegation visits amongst all parties.