Dr Ali Hamed Al-Mulla talks about GCC and Korean partnership
The Gulf Organization for Industrial Consulting (GOIC) and Korea Institute for Industrial Economics and Trade (KIET) organised a workshop on industrial diversification and job creation between GCC and Republic of Korea in November 2015 at the Intercontinental Hotel in Abu Dhabi.
The GCC has supplied 71.2 % of Korea’s crude oil imports and 52.4 % of its natural gas imports in 2013.
In his session, Al Mulla emphasised how the GCC has provided Korea with opportunities in the construction sector including the building of expressways, seaports, and industrial plants.
He said that about 39.8% of the foreign construction projects Korean companies have won have been in the GCC. He added that the effectiveness of this economic partnership between GCC and Korea relied heavily on volatile oil prices and the GCC’s construction market, rather than on more stable bases for bilateral cooperation. “GCC-Korea economic relations need to be diversified to include other industrial sectors, and the collaboration between GCC and Korea should also include greater involvement of private sector MSEs and entrepreneurs.”
Al Mulla said that the GCC started free trade agreement (FTA) negotiations with the Korean government in July 2008, but negotiations were stopped due to the financial crisis of 2009, and the GCC countries and Korea are considering resumption of FTA negotiations.