New bureau for boosting Yemen-GCC trade exchange [Archives:2004/700/Business & Economy]

January 5 2004

Mahyoub Al-Kamaly
It has been announced in Kuwait recently that a Bureau for International Cooperation between Yemen and the Gulf Cooperation Council has been established aimed at enhancing the exchange of trade and expertise in agricultural and fish production fields.
The announcement on the new cooperation bureau came in the wake of an initiative Yemen had offered during a meeting held by the Arab Cooperative Union in Kuwait in 2000.
The idea had then received a good welcome from the State of Kuwait and now agreement had been reached anew on founding the bureau in a tripartite meeting grouping representatives from Yemen, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. The meeting was held on the sidelines of meetings of the Arab Cooperative Union held in Cairo in April 2002.
The Gulf states have expressed willingness to open markets of their countries to Yemeni products especially agricultural and fish through coordination between the cooperatives and unions and also to agree on specifications and products on demand in those markets.
Kuwaiti cooperatives have expressed readiness to open special shelves for marketing Yemeni products in return for getting 10% of profits. According to Yemeni sources a number of Kuwaiti financiers and businessmen have shown their desire for building and funding agricultural and fish cooperative projects in Yemen and also their desire to visit the Yemen Republic to meet their businessmen counterparts and to get acquainted with available investment opportunities in Yemen.
Establishment of the new cooperative bureau would open for the Yemeni cooperatives and unions an opportunity to work for upgrading quality of their fish and agricultural products in a manner compatible with Gulf markets and also to encourage fishermen and farmers as well as funding strategic projects and facilitating the process of exportation.
The new plan necessitates providing speedy transportation means, large refrigerators to transfer the products across the joint Yemeni-Gulf land roads.
Yemen's joining as member in the Gulf Cooperative Bureau is considered a significant step on the way of consolidating areas of economic, investment and trade cooperation between Yemen and the GCC countries.
By this membership Yemen would be able to develop the Yemeni-Gulf cooperative work and to benefit from the Gulf experiences and exchange of expertise in all productive areas.
Yemen seeks to diversify its exports in order to increase revenues of its national income that depends mainly on exporting oil and its products. Therefore the Yemeni fish and agricultural products would find their way easily into he Gulf markets and that would develop and evolve the movement of production and increase Yemeni exports.