EU relations with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)

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  • 30/11/2014
    Statement by the Spokesperson on the second round of parliamentary election in Bahrain Statement by the Spokesperson on the second round of parliamentary election in Bahrain <p>The holding of the second round of parliamentary and municipal elections in Bahrain on 29 November is a positive achievement, as is the significant participation of Bahrainis.</p> 11/30/2014 19:00:00 11/30/2014 19:00:00 11/30/2014 19:00:00 11/06/2016 19:00:00 2014113019 090126248d8c484b N 090126248d8c484b /statements-eeas/2014/141130_02_en.htm 10302 xml Y /statements-eeas/2014/141130_02_en.htm 2 /statements-eeas/2014/141130_02_en.htm /statements-eeas/2014/141130_02_fr.htm /statements-eeas/2014/141130_02_zz.htm N ID_INTERNAL N N
    Statement by the Spokesperson on the second round of parliamentary election in Bahrain
  • 08/11/2014
    Statement from the High Representative Federica Mogherini on the formation of a new government in Yemen Statement from the High Representative Federica Mogherini on the formation of a new government in Yemen <p>The announcement of the formation of a new and inclusive government under the leadership of Prime Minister Khaled Bahah is a critical step to make headway in much needed economic and political reforms towards the successful conclusion of the transition.<br/>It is now important for all political actors to engage constructively to support the new cabinet to implement decisive reforms for the benefit of all Yemenis, and take action to improve fiscal sustainability and fight corruption in the public administration.</p> 11/08/2014 18:41:51 11/08/2014 18:41:51 11/08/2014 18:41:51 11/08/2014 18:41:51 2014110818 090126248d2c1641 N 090126248d2c1641 /statements-eeas/2014/141108_01_en.htm 10787 xml Y /statements-eeas/2014/141108_01_en.htm 2 /statements-eeas/2014/141108_01_en.htm /statements-eeas/2014/141108_01_fr.htm /statements-eeas/2014/141108_01_zz.htm N ID_INTERNAL N N
    Statement from the High Representative Federica Mogherini on the formation of a new government in Yemen
  • 05/11/2014
    Statement by High Representative Federica Mogherini on today's terrorist attack in Jerusalem Statement by High Representative Federica Mogherini on today's terrorist attack in Jerusalem <p>Today's terrorist attack in East Jerusalem is further painful evidence of the need to undertake serious efforts towards a sustainable peace agreement in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. We express our heartfelt condolences to the victim's family.</p> 11/05/2014 18:00:00 11/05/2014 18:00:00 11/05/2014 18:00:00 11/05/2014 18:00:00 2014110518 090126248d2c5ba8 N 090126248d2c5ba8 /statements-eeas/2014/141105_04_en.htm 9805 xml Y /statements-eeas/2014/141105_04_en.htm 2 /statements-eeas/2014/141105_04_en.htm /statements-eeas/2014/141105_04_fr.htm /statements-eeas/2014/141105_04_zz.htm N ID_INTERNAL N N
    Statement by High Representative Federica Mogherini on today's terrorist attack in Jerusalem

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Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC)Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC)

The Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (often referred to as the GCC, but officially known as the CCASG) is a regional organisation, with six members: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Set up in 1981, its objectives are to enhance coordination, integration and inter-connection among its members. All GCC members are also members of the Arab League and Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates are prominent members of OPEC.

Political relations

The EU established bilateral relations with the GCC countries through the 1988 Cooperation Agreement, intended to:

  • strengthen stability in a region of strategic importance;
  • facilitate political and economic relations;
  • broaden economic and technical cooperation;
  • broaden cooperation on energy, industry, trade and services, agriculture, fisheries, investment, science, technology and environment.

The Agreement provides for annual joint councils/ministerial meetings (between the EU and the GCC foreign ministers), and for joint cooperation committees at senior official level.

The Agreement allowed for the development of closer cooperation on issues such as energy, transport, research and innovation, and the economy.

The most recent EU-GCC ministerial meeting took place in Manama, Bahrain, on 30 June 2013, co-chaired by the EU High Representative-Vice President Ashton and Bahraini Foreign Minister Shaikh Khalid Bin Ahmed Bin Mohamed Al Khalifa.

The EU Delegation in Saudi Arabia is accredited to five GCC countries (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia). A second EU Delegation opened in Abu Dhabi in the second half of 2013 and covers the United Arab Emirates.

Trade

The GCC is the EU's fifth largest export market (€95 bn of exports in 2013), and the EU is the grouping's biggest trading partner, with trade flows totalling €152 billion, or 13% of the GCC's global trade.

The 1988 Cooperation Agreement contained a commitment from both sides to enter into negotiations on a free trade agreement. Negotiations have started and been suspended several times since 1990. Negotiations resumed in March 2002, but were suspended by the GCC in 2008. Further informal contacts have taken place ever since. The EU remains committed to concluding the agreement.

Industrialised and High-Income Countries Instrument (ICI)

The EU's ICI fund for cooperation with high-income countries is the framework for financial cooperation between the EU and the Gulf region (and other high-income countries). Amongst other projects, the ICI has financed the EU-GCC Clean Energy Network for cooperation among various players in the EU and GCC on clean energy.