The Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) Secretariat General

 

 

 

Long –Term Comprehensive Development Strategy

 

For the GCC States

 

(2000-2025)

 

 

 

 

1999

Background

 

The Planning and Development Committee (comprising of Ministers of Planning and Development in the GCC States) undertook a review of the document: “Development Goals, Policies and Plans for the GCC States“(approved in March

1985). To this effect the sub – Committees subordinated to the Planning and Development Committee were, in the fourth (October 1996) and fifth (October 1997) meetings, directed, to draw up a document outlining the future course of comprehensive development for the GCC states in a manner that it takes into account

the characteristics of the 21st century and at the same time addresses the key

challenges and demands of the global economic and social developments. Among the approved documents within the GCC framework, is the paper of the State of Kuwait entitled, “Proposed General Framework for the Long Term Comprehensive Gulf Plan (2000-2025).

 

As a result of the constant efforts of the technical team assigned with this task, and after a careful review, in light of the suggestions and views of the member states on the findings made by the committee set up by the Committee of Ministerial Secretaries and the Planning Agencies, this document was approved by the Ministerial Committee on Planning and Development in its 7th meeting held in September 1998.

Later, the Ministerial Council recommended it for submission to the Supreme

Council.

 

Based on the recommendations of the Ministerial Council, the Supreme Council ratified the document, “Long –Term Comprehensive Development Strategy For the GCC States (2000-2025) “, in its 18th session held in Abu Dhabi from 18th to 20th Sha’abaan 1419 AH, corresponding to 7th to 9th December 1998 AD.

 

This document contains a brief review and exposition of the achievements of the GCC States in terms of development, which were made collectively as well as separately. This document also makes an objective assessment of the challenges facing the Council in the various spheres. Based on this objective estimation, the strategic goals and basic objectives of the Comprehensive Strategy for development were laid down. The development path and the mechanisms for achieving the goals and objectives were also set forth on the same basis.

 

While publishing this document, the Secretariat General hopes that everyone concerned with Planning Affairs in the GCC states will benefit from it and use the relevant development policies and paths laid down in this document to achieve its goals. It is confident that the Planning &Development Committee shall remain keen in implementing the main goal, which is to realize sustainable and integrated development for the GCC states.

 

The Secretariat General – the Economic Affairs Sector

 

Department of Planning &Research

 

 

Long –Term Comprehensive Development Strategy

 

For the GCC States

 

(2000-2025)

 

 

 

 

Introduction

 

The current period constitutes a critical juncture for the joint action initiated by the GCC States. This is not only because it is a period of transition in which the peoples of the world are getting ready to enter the gates of the new century but also because it is a stage characterized by challenges and new developments, which must be certainly dealt with. That is because the vision and thinking which used to prevail

in the world in the beginning of the second half of the 20th century has changed.

 

As the establishment of the GCC within the Arabian context was a historical necessity of the early 1980s, so it is a historical necessity of the 21st century that its existence continues. This is confirmed by the results it has produced as well as by the challenges currently surrounding this onward march.

 

Therefore, there is an urgent need for the GCC states to introspect. They should take stock of all the available opportunities and limitations imposed upon them as well as the challenges facing them, so that it could build new paths towards a future, which is in harmony with the hopes and aspirations of its people, and which looks forward to a better tomorrow for their future generations. It is a matter that entails learning the useful lessons from the achievements of the development process and its failures in each and every GCC state. This should be done in order to evolve better paths of development so as to facilitate the movement towards goals and objectives

laid down for the early decades of the 21st century.

 

This document contains a brief review of the achievements, the current situation and threats prevailing in the GCC states at the local, regional and international levels in economic, social, and political and security fields. The document also deals with the broad outlines of the Long Term Comprehensive Development Strategy (2000-

2025), which has been designed to address the challenges of the first quarter of the

21st century.

 

The Strategy also contains description of the main axis (goal) of development. To this main axis are connected a group other axes (paths, measures) of action, which have been classified under the category of integrated development issues. These issues are to be addressed in the time – frame laid down by the strategy.

 

It concludes with a description of the institutional, organizational, technological and legal mechanisms, which must be followed in order to activate the implementation process of the proposed strategy.

Situations and Challenges

 

The inception of the GCC in May 1981 came as the culmination of the serious efforts imbued with faith in its objectives and conscientious of its need at all levels of intellectual and political activity since the second half of the 1970s. Thus, the Council came as actualization of the great dream of the peoples of the Arabian States of the Gulf. This reflected itself in the collective efforts towards economic, social and political integration representing Gulf Unity. The Gulf Unity embodies all the necessary historical, cultural, human and material ingredients and factors thereby making it capable of meeting all challenges that threaten its cultural progress .It is capable of warding – off the various threats emerging against its existence or against any of its members at the local, regional and international levels.

 

After reviewing and evaluating the process of the joint action made by the GCC states, it is clear that it was able to subdue the challenges in the midst of which the Council was raised. Those challenges were embodied in a group of threats. The joint action was able to position itself against those challenges and threats by ensuring the effectiveness of the cultural and social presence of its peoples in the world arena throughout the period of its existence.

 

While facing those challenges, all the member states exerted maximum efforts in order to achieve the objectives laid down by the founding charter and by the auxiliary agreements and strategies, which originated from the successive sessions of the Supreme Council as well as the major organizations and institutions which evolved in the bosom of the Secretariat General of the Council.

 

In as far as it concerns review and evaluation, it can be concluded that the GCC states have made tremendous strides in all fields of development work. Indeed many of the challenges surrounding the development efforts have been surmounted by national as well as integrated policies pursued side by side at the same time. Despite that, the latest international, regional and local developments have brought forth changes, in the past years. These changes are likely to have dangerous consequences not only for the process of development in every State that strives towards economic and social progress- GCC states being among them- but also on the future of the peoples of those countries, the continuity of their existence, and their role in the

progress of the world civilization in the 21st century. There is no doubt that the

dealing with these new developments will constitute one of the major challenges in any development effort in the future stages.

 

 

 

 

First – At the level of national (individual) efforts of the GCC States

 

An objective estimation of the development process in the GCC States confirms the fact that these states have indeed made a number of achievements in their efforts aimed economic and social progress.

 

There is no doubt the oil supplies, which have increased many folds during the

1970’s have impacted the public budget in a major way. Increased oil supplies have helped these states to avoid difficulties in financing development projects. It has

enabled them to make heavy spending on implementation of welfare – oriented development plans. The oil supplies have also helped some of them in forming external sources that contribute to reinforcing the power of financing the local economy.

 

The major outcomes of those outlays are evident in the rise in the standard of living and improvement in the quality of life of the citizens, which were achieved by means of building mammoth infrastructure facilities and social capital. It is also evident in consolidation of the pillars of human development as reflected in high quality social services including housing, education, health and social care. On the same lines, various sectors of the economy, other than oil, have been promoted. This is in order to begin the process of balanced development based on diversification of the sources of income as well as by ensuring active participation of the GCC states in the fields of international markets, trade, investment and international aid.

 

On the other hand, the major challenge facing the development process at one level or another, and one, which has not been overcome despite four decades of development, is the continuance of domination by a single resource. The sources of income remain limited and need to be increased. This tends to narrow the options for development. It also limits the absorption capacity of the local market because of over-dependence on imports and because of the inability of the industrial sector to meet the local consumer and investment demands. The absorption capacity of the markets is also limited by the difficulties being faced in dealing with new technology and in building capacities to acquire technological self – sufficiency. Another limiting factor is the imbalance, which favors consumption power over savings and productive investment.

 

Related with all these challenges is the clear imbalance in the population structure. It has negative effects on social homogeneity and the issues of citizenship and loyalty. This imbalance is due to over – dependence on foreign workers, market imbalances and the relative stagnation of the education & training systems and the system of employment and wages.

 

Despite the fact that dependence on petroleum resources was associated with the phenomenon of constant fluctuation in income and spending, this phenomenon was not regarded as something for which alternatives should be sought in order that a path of development – stable in all its economic and social dimensions – could be found.

 

With the fall in oil revenues as a consequence of the fall in prices even before the end of the first half of the 1980s; and with the continuance of the down ward trend in the last period; and the constant increase in the rate of population growth combined with concentration of the national workforce only in the government and services sector gave strength to these challenges. These challenges had a great impact on the capacity to finance the development projects. It is reflected in the continuation of deficit in the public budget. This is accompanied with deflationary policies, which have direct and indirect impact on production capacity and growth rate. Such policies also have negative distributive and social effects in the society.

Second – At the level of Joint Action

 

There are a number of excellent positive results, which can be traced back to the shared characteristics between the GCC states, including the cultural heritage and factors like geography, resources, population and environment. It also includes, shared concerns and hopes.

 

One of the most important results has been the creation of strong faith among the peoples in the absolute need for the Council to continue to exist as a framework for dealing with challenges; and for organizing the development endeavors; and for creating an institutional structure for the joint Gulf action in the economic and social fields. In addition to that, a clear vision has been outlined to address issues pertaining not just to the political and security challenges but also to address long – term development challenges and its various complexities.

 

As far as it concerns the results of joint action, which constitute the ingredients and pillars for the continuity of the process of development integration, then this bloc of states is a sound structure to meet the challenges and to avoid threats; and to activate the avenues for dialogue and consultation; and to create the general framework for mutual understanding in order to the prioritize the means of achieving them. Aside from that, this effort has been able to consolidate the essential infrastructure to a considerable extent in order to achieve integrated development. This is evident in a large number of agreements, institutions and working laws in all fields of development work including social, political as well as security development. In addition, several joint projects have been constructed. These projects constitute one of the basic mechanisms for realizing economic and social integration between the GCC states.

 

At the level of challenges, they can be divided into two sets. The first set comprises of the outcome of the process of development in all the member states, the nature of geo-political situation, resources and demographic features. The second set comprises of the new developments in the world system in the last two decades of the twentieth century.

 

The First Set:

 

Following are the major challenges grouped in the first set:

 

•        The region continues to reel under the effect of conflicting global petroleum interests centered in and around the region. Besides, other regional problems continue to besiege the GCC states.

•    The pillars of the economy of the GCC states have been founded on the basis of competition (duplication) rather than integration. This has limited the growth of the volume of inter – trade, prevented diversification of trade and obstructed the integration the manufacturing sector.

• Scarcity of water resources and rise in the cost of alternative water resources.

•    The development efforts, especially those associated with building capacities for technological advancement and political & administrative development have been launched with national considerations in mind. These efforts have not been made with collective considerations like reducing disparity in the levels of

development. Similarly, specific standards have not been set for distributing the fruits of integration among the member states.

•    There is incongruence between the role of the private sector in development and the level of incentives provided by the State for institutions of the private sector.

•    Encouragement of the concept of ” fatherly treatment” for the citizens by the state. This concept on the one hand, led to the concentration of the national workforce in state administrative units & government institutions and, on the other hand, it led to the disinclination, on part of citizens, towards technical and vocational activities. This in turn led to dependence on the foreign workers in order to fulfill the needs of the job market in non- governmental activities could be met.

•    Disharmony between the products of educational and training systems and the needs of the job market on the one hand and economic structures on the other. There is a need to develop these systems so that they attend to the philosophy, content and mechanisms in order to meet the needs of the job market and the demands of economy.

• Predominance of the forces of consumption over those of production.

•    Existence of deficit in the national budget. This, along with the inability of the Gulf economies to employ labor and to invest in productive capacities owing to deflationary economic, fiscal and monetary policies have negative social implications.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Second Set of Challenges:

 

The challenges of this set can be seen in a group of global developments. These challenges will have to be addressed by the development efforts in the first decades of the 21st century. These challenges are evident in a number of fields:

 

The Intellectual Field: There are two major concepts in the modern development thought: the first being the concept of human development, which includes aspects such as preservation of environment and natural resources. This concept is based on number principles. The most important among those principles is increasing the choices of the people, giving them opportunities for work and to earn a living, protecting the rights of citizens, aiming at sustainable development and linking up the geographic regions as well as the present and the future generations. On the other hand, the second concept is related to the new concept of the modern state and its role in the economic and social life. It includes a number of issues like participation of the private sector, activation of the market mechanisms and horizontal participation by the civil society in all development efforts.

 

In the field of International Political Relationships: Among the major new developments in this field are: disintegration of the Soviet Union, end of the cold war, end of the international order characterized by two poles, military intervention by United Nation’s forces to resolve regional conflicts and continuation of conflict between major powers as regards oil, a vast proportion of which is concentrated in the

Gulf states and a few other states in the region; and the developments in the Middle

East peace process.

 

In the Field of International Economic Relationships: Among the major developments in this fields are: formation of regional economic blocs; the growing trend towards globalization of the economy, which includes freeing the international trade and investment within the framework of the World trade Organization (WTO); quitting centralized planning, adopting decentralized planning, establishing a free market economy and developing economic and technological capacities of the newly industrialized nations.

 

Among the major developments of this phase are: continuance of the scientific & technological revolution and their applications, including those in the filed of information technology and increased importance of earmarking expenditure on scientific research. The repercussions of these successive revolutionary changes on the vocational structures of manpower and the rate of unemployment in all sectors of the economy are significant. In addition, successive developments in the field of communications and information have had great impact on the on the economic, social facets in the various countries.

 

There is no doubt that, together, these challenges constitute the objective basis for the GCC states, in the light of which, they can form strategies to address these challenges in the first quarter of the 21st century. Similarly, on the same basis, the

GCC states can invest all their achievements made through the development efforts since 1981. This would lead to consolidation of the economic, social and political bloc which is not only capable of addressing the challenges of the next century but also of placing the Gulf on a high pedestal globally.

 

The Main Goal and the Strategic Objectives

 

In light of the achievements made and the challenges being faced by the process of joint action since 1981, the main goal for the Gulf development strategy for the period 2000-2025 can be drawn up. This main goal is embodied in the following: accomplishing sustainable and integrated development for the GCC states, effecting coordination between the activities of the national development plans, imparting the necessary flexibility to serve the goals of development in each state separately and jointly at the level of the Council thereby accomplishing constant rise in the quality of life of the people in the GCC states and instilling the capacity to adjust with the

developments of the 21st century.

 

A group of strategic objectives branch out from this main goal. These objectives can be achieved by adopting long – term development paths comprising of appropriate mechanisms and measures. Following are the group of strategic objectives, which have been classified according to integrated development issues:

 

First – the Issue of Sustainable Development:

 

Realization of the main strategic and integrated goal for the GCC states will be completed within the framework the comprehensive concept of sustainable development. Therefore, the first strategic objective is embodied in the following:

The comprehensive concept of sustainable development should be promoted during the time period in which this strategy will be implemented. This is because the concept of sustainable development stresses the fact that development is a continuous process transcending generations and that it is as result of interaction of human beings with the existing resources as well the prevailing conditions that causes constant advancement of society and increases its efficiency in utilizing the human, material and technological resources.

 

That requires adopting the following paths:

 

•    Optimum utilization of the available resources and allocation of human and material resources in an appropriate manner.

•    Deriving maximum benefit from the technical capabilities and adapting their use for inducing upward growth and in advancing the human capacities.

• Preservation of environment.

•    Clearly understanding the modern functions of the state, thereby ensuring sustainable development and adopting policies that ensure economic and social stability and the performance in terms of development.

•    Enlisting participation of all institutions in the society in the development process and seriously handling the options before the society and its priorities.

•    Advancing the institutional capacities and creating a good environment for the general economic and social policies.

•    Evolving pre-emptive programs to protect some groups in the society. For example, initiating unemployment insurance and social care programs.

•    Emphasizing the reciprocal role between productive work and the sphere of human resources development.

•    Enlisting the participation of the work force in productive economic activities and guaranteeing their rights and constantly rehabilitating and training them for the job market.

•    Activating the market forces (demand and supply) and safeguarding the fundamentals of the free market.

 

 

 

 

Second – Security and Defense Issues:

 

The strategic objective in this field is embodied in attaining self – reliance in meeting the security and defense needs. This could be considered to be a part of the development process in the GCC states.

 

Third – Economic Issues:

 

Following are the strategic objectives to activate the efforts for realizing long – term integrated economic development:

 

(1) Realizing Integrated Economic Partnership:

 

The achievement of this objective calls for adopting the following measures:

 

•    The member states should, singly and collectively, institute partnership between the Government and institutions of the society in financing development projects specified by the development plans and the public budget.

•    Removing all hurdles, which prevent the movement of economic resources between the GCC States.

•    According the natural and the naturalized citizens of the GCC states the same treatment that is accorded to the citizen of the member state in all economic activities.

• Enhancing and reinforcing inter- trade among the GCC states.

 

 

 

 

(2) Removing the sources of vulnerability from the economic environment of the GCC states:

 

Attainment of this objective calls for undertaking the following measures:

 

•    Redoubling investment in the non-petroleum manufacturing activities in order to reduce the dominance of the single source of income.

•    Widening and deepening the absorption capacity of the local economy and effecting integration between external and local trade of the GCC states.

•    Adopting suitable sectoral strategies, which serve the objectives of comprehensive development in the GCC states.

 

 

 

 

(3) Ensuring adequate water resources for development needs:

 

This objective shall be realized by adopting the following course:

 

•    Creating non – conventional alternatives for treatment of water resources in order to attain self – sufficiency in meeting the development needs and continuing with the following:

– Utilizing advanced technological means to rationalize the multifarious uses of

water; and to increase the available quantity of water; and to prevent deterioration in its quality, and to explore new sources of water.

–     Treatment of used water by laying down appropriate technical specifications and organizational controls.

–     Enhancing and reinforcing the means to guarantee maximum benefit from rainwater; and harnessing replenished water by erecting dams and by investing in building water desalination plants and drinking water technology.

–     Consolidating control over and harnessing of non – renewable subterranean water and developing & preserving it as strategic reserves.

• Following modern regulations in managing the water balance.

(4) Deriving maximum benefit from infrastructure facilities as they are principal ingredients of development in the manufacturing sector:

 

Following are the main paths leading to the realization of this objective:

 

•    Deriving optimum benefit from suspended or unexploited energy by utilizing the infrastructure facilities like, energy – generation stations, water desalination plants, ports and means of transportation and communication.

•    Complete interlinking of the infrastructure network among the GCC states, especially in the field of electricity, transportation communication and information.

 

 

 

 

(5) Building joint large-scale Gulf projects, as these projects are capable of penetrating into the international markets. They grow by making individual and collective profit and they have the capacity for technical and scientific applications. Alternative utilization of oil resources must also be sought.

 

These objectives can be realized by adopting the following strategic paths:

 

•    Adopting standards, which strengthen the negotiating and competitive position of the GCC states in the world markets and makes them standard bearers of technology and capitalism.

•    Laying down the priorities for building joint projects in a manner that they hinge around two types of projects. The first type caters to the demands of manufacturing import alternatives and the second enhances export capacity. The absorption capacity of Gulf and foreign capital should be raised so that it imparts the power to achieve high value – addition and leads to harnessing of the local natural resources to the optimum. In addition, modern manufacturing technology should be used. There should be a production inter-link and national manpower should be employed.

•    Undertaking joint projects in the services sector side by side with the manufacturing sector with emphasis on achieving a competitive edge.

 

 

 

 

(6) Undertaking small-scale projects based on appropriate foundations, which will fulfill the objectives of integration between the large – scale projects and reinforce the local economic network within each GGC state and between them:

 

This strategic objective shall be achieved by adopting the following strategic paths:

 

•    Adopting appropriate mechanisms for financing. For example instituting joint funds for financing the private institutions in the GCC states.

• Imparting training to the GGC youth on entrepreneurship.

 

•    Depending on the local, natural and synthetic resources for production in the small-scale projects.

•    Extending the bridges of cooperation with the developed and friendly countries in order to profit from their experiences in managing such enterprises especially in terms of choosing production methods and devising appropriate marketing strategies.

 

Fourth – Issues Related to Technical and Scientific Capacity Building

 

The strategic objective related to these issues include:

 

Building an advanced scientific, technological and information data base, which imparts the economies of the GCC states with increased capacity to diversify and broaden the choices of development and lends the integration efforts a competitive capacity in relation to the economic, regional and global blocs.

 

This objective can be achieved by adopting the following paths:

 

•    Giving up the conventional patterns of transfer of technology like visitant and borrowed technology. Instead, transfer of technology should be done on contract basis or it should be bought.

•    Adopting a joint technical and scientific strategy, which gels well with the objectives of comprehensive development. This should be coupled with modernization of the relevant mechanisms.

•    Raising the efficiency of the scientific and research institutions and ensuring that they have adequate facilities; and revising the structures of scientific research institutions so that they are able to promote excellence, competition and advancement; and encourage innovation and discovery, thus increasing the number of researchers and scientists.

•    Adopting the various means that take the knowledge base and scientific and technical capacities to the level of excellence, thereby giving the GCC states a competitive edge in the world.

•    Allocating increased funds for scientific research, development and general research activities. There should be an appropriate system of incentives to encourage the contribution of the private sector in these outlays. Research activities should be rationalized so as to avoid duplication in conducting research. The results of the research activities should be circulated to the concerned institutions in the GCC states.

•    Considering education and training to be the main mechanisms for capacity building, making the required advancement of syllabi and the systems for training and increasing opportunities for technical education.

•    Creating mechanisms to attain cohesion between research activities in the scientific and economic institutions and making it easy to utilize the results and the technology that have been locally developed.

•    Establishing specialist scientific and technical institutions to deal with petroleum and gas resources.

•    Evolving mechanisms to protect the produced technology and benefiting from transferred technology.

 

•    Building developed and integrated information bases and evolving the most efficient ways to profit from them in all fields of development. There should be computer inter-link between the various information bases.

•    Deriving maximum benefit from the global developments taking place in the filed of information technology and increasing investment in this field because it is one of the pillars of economic development and diversification of the productive bases belonging to the GCC states.

 

Fifth – the Issue of Interaction with the Economic and Regional Blocs:

 

The strategic objective with regard to interaction with economic and regional blocs is embodied in reinforcing the economic objectives aimed at integration in the GCC states. This is represented in broadening and deepening the market, increasing efficiency in of the local economies and strengthening their capacity to negotiate and to compete in the foreign markets. The following measures will facilitate in reaching that goal:

 

•    Deepening the bonds of cooperation with the Arab and Islamic countries as they lend strategic depth to all aspects of sustainable development in the GCC states and constitute the necessary support base in interaction the international blocs.

•    Coordinating the import – export policy from and to the international markets as well as the pursuing the policy of transfer of technology from these markets.

• Widening the compass of export industries and giving them a competitive edge.

Holding increased share for the GCC states in the conventional markets for its trading partners. Efforts should be made to create new markets.

•    Enacting trade and investment laws and launching a uniform customs tariff in the GCC. Appropriate mechanisms should be evolved to actively deal with repercussions of joining the world trade organization in a manner that it protects the vital interests of the GCC states.

•    Holding more and more joint exhibitions and encouraging establishment of specialized companies promoting exports.

• Establishing joint free zones between the GCC states.

 

 

 

 

Sixth – Social Issues:

 

The basic objective in the field of social development under this strategy is embodied in advancement of all aspects of social development by means of training, education, health and intellectual & cultural development. It also includes programs for social care as part of the effort to maintain high levels of welfare and humanitarian work in all fields of life:

 

This objective shall be achieved by adopting the following paths:

 

•    Restructuring the institutions, systems and programs for intellectual and cultural development in order to advance every dimension of culture which includes scientific know how, technology, concepts, moral and religious values as well as values that foster a sense of belonging and loyalty.

 

•    Effecting suitable changes in the balance of activities acquired during the past developmental decades as these changes have positive impact on thought and behavior as well as on the pattern of spending and consumption.

•    Strengthening the values fostering self – dependence, and encouraging the citizens to participate in all vocations and humanitarian activities.

•    Facilitating citizens to acquire the capacity to assimilate the latest developments in the field of science, technology, and culture. They should possess the ability to adapt these developments for national needs and employ them in a manner that they do not infringe upon fundamental social and moral values.

•    Inducing necessary changes in the philosophy of educational and training systems, scientific research and contents of syllabi so as to attain the goals of sustainable development and leads to advancement in all forms of human behavior. Similarly there should be advancement in capacities of the citizens to innovate and discover.

•    Continuing with paying due attention to the role of women in society in all aspects of society and economy and reiterating her crucial role in raising the family.

 

Seventh – Demographic and Manpower Issues:

The strategic objective for dealing with this issue is embodied in the following: Seeking comprehensive treatment of demographic issues and human resources

and correcting the defect in the demographic structure and the structure of the work

force in the GCC states so that it leads to the realization of demographic and social homogeneity and enhances the productivity and efficiency of the GCC citizens.

 

This objective can be achieved by adopting the following paths:

 

•    Adopting effective plans to develop and to manage the human resources and to increase their efficiency and productivity.

•    Continuing with programs for employing national manpower and activating these programs in all states of the GCC, and keeping into consideration productive capacity and efficiency in performance.

• Increasing the level of participation of women in the workforce.

•    Adopting payment and employment system in a manner that it helps in recruitment of national labor in the private sector.

•    Restructuring the systems and concepts related to educational and training institutions so that they meet the demands of the development activities by employing national labor in all professions in the private sector.

•    Instilling the values of self – dependence in the citizens of the GCC states. They should be able to create their own sources of income and avoid dependence on the state for employment.

•    Creating an appropriate environment for integrated investment by the citizens of GCC states so as to provide suitable opportunities in order to actualize their initiatives and projects in all GCC states.

Eighth – Issues related to the Media:

 

The strategic objective in this sphere is embodied in the following:

 

Enlisting the support of the citizens with the objective of integration between the GCC states, and providing opportunities to the citizens to appreciate the integrative efforts and to benefit from its fruits in a balanced manner.

 

In order to achieve this objective the following path shall be adopted:

 

•    Providing quality media programs and advancing the media in terms of approach and content in order to generate awareness about ways to deal with the current stage of development in an informed and conscientious manner. Joint media programs should also be presented.

•    Raising awareness on a regular basis on the importance of integrated development issues and their positive impact on the GCC citizens. Awareness should also be raised about problems facing the joint action. Participation of the citizen should be sought in soliciting proposals and suggestions to solve those problems.

•    Motivating the private sector to increase its participation in media issues with a view to giving strength to the modern intellectual fabric, which is capable of bolstering the development aspirations in the GCC states and of meeting the challenges thrown by global changes in these fields as well as consolidating its position in the world.

 

Mechanisms for Implementing the Strategy:

 

Indeed, the most important institutional mechanism to implement the proposed strategy is embodied in the Secretariat General of the Council and all the institutions and committees originating from it, especially the Unified Economic Agreement and the resolutions passed in the successive sessions of the Supreme Council. The following are additional mechanisms for the implementation of the strategy.

 

(1) Recognizing the Planning Agencies in the GCC states as the main mechanisms for activating the fields of joint action and development efforts and follow – up of those efforts.

(2) Creating non – conventional institutional mechanisms to deal with long term development issues, prominent among them are the issues of technological development, transfer of technology, alternative uses of petroleum, management the water balance, information and human resources.

(3) Laying down new sectoral strategies or updating the old ones so as to make it

compatible with the latest developments.

(4) Updating the philosophy and systems of applied administration practices so that it incorporates the new body of knowledge in the Management and Administration Sciences as well information systems and the means of communication.

(5) Creating media inter-link between the GCC states and concentrating on the impact of the integrated development strategy on the media programs in all the GCC states.

(6) Amending legislations, laws and resolutions, which are incompatible with efforts aimed at achieving the strategic objectives during the next phase.

(7) The GCC states shall take those aspects of this strategy, which suit with the priorities, capacities and needs in a manner that it serves the process of joint action between them.

(8) The Secretariat General, in cooperation with the concerned quarters, shall hold workshops, scientific seminars and symposia with the aim of achieving the goals and objectives of this strategy. It shall also consult and coordinate with regard to drawing up policies and programs necessary for implementing the provisions of this strategy.

(9) The Planning and Development Committee shall review this strategy on a regular basis. This will ensure that it continues to keep pace with the local, regional and global developments.