The Executive Committee of the Saudi-Emirati Coordination Council, the newly-formed body that reflects an era of even closer cooperation between the two Gulf Arab countries in various sectors, discussed and launched a number of initiatives at its first meeting in Abu Dhabi.
The first edition of the Saudi-Emirati Coordination Council manual was approved during the meeting, held under the chairmanship of Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Economy and Planning Mohammed Al-Tuwaijri and the UAE Minister of Cabinet Affairs and the Future Mohammad Al Gergawi, in the presence of 16 ministers and top officials from both sides.
This meeting comes in line with the ‘Strategy of Resolve’ adopted in the minutes of the first meeting of the Saudi-Emirati Coordination Council, signed by the Saudi and UAE governments which stipulated creation of the Executive Committee. The meeting also aimed at achieving the objectives of the Council and its aspirations to deepen bilateral ties in several spheres, most importantly in the economic, human development and knowledge aspects as well as political and security fields.
The Saudi Minister of Economy and Planning, Mohammed Al-Tuwaijri, said in his speech that the Executive Committee’s first meeting is a continuation of the achievements made in the relations between the two countries, and that it’s an important vital breakthrough, a real development, and an effective engine for the work of the Council to apply and follow up the ideas, initiatives and projects.
“The Council was established to create an exceptional model in cooperation relations between the two brotherly countries, and to seek to strengthen the ties of interdependence and develop them, and to support the development opportunities of the two countries economically, in human development and in terms of knowledge and to boost them,” Al-Tuwaijri said.
“This places great tasks upon us, which we are honored to carry out, and we strive to achieve them in the fullest possible manner.
“The role of the Executive Committee is to work to remove any obstacles that stand in the way of achieving joint initiatives and to follow-up on the implementation of the projects focused on achieving the security and prosperity of the two brotherly people,” he added.
The UAE Minister of Cabinet Affairs and the Future Mohammad Al Gergawi, who heads the Executive Committee from the UAE side, said: “The first Committee meeting under the umbrella of the Saudi-Emirati Coordination Council is a continuation of the enhancement of integration in issues of common concern.”
He added: “Our goal is to see Saudi and Emirati citizens see themselves in a single fabric with a common aspiration for a bright future.”
Al Gergawi stressed that the Executive Committee’s work is a “historic task” to provide a successful model for bilateral integration. “We have the unlimited support of our leadership to unite efforts and invest energies for the benefit of our citizens,” he said.
The Committee discussed a number of initiatives, the results of the action progress of each initiative and the desired results. It was agreed to sign the mutual recognition agreement for the approved economic operators’ programme to facilitate the flow of traffic at the customs outlets as soon as the required approvals from both sides are completed. This coincides with the pilot launch of the fast track of the companies of the economic operators’ programme.
In the field of entrepreneurship, a financial awareness initiative for Saudi and Emirati youth was launched to introduce and market the products of small traders between the two countries through the establishment of joint events.
In the field of supply security, a joint cooperation programme was signed between Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to test the supply chain and security systems in the major sectors of the two countries during a crisis or disaster and to identify the points of improvement and develop an implementation plan to address them.
In the field of logistics and infrastructure, an initiative was reviewed and launched with the aim of unifying the procedures, facilities and legislations for the travel of disabled and special needs persons, in addition to the joint market initiative in aviation. The members of the Executive Committee team were accredited by the two sides to study, evaluate and follow up the project.
In the field of financial services and markets, the virtual currency project was launched on an experimental basis and is restricted to trading between a number of banks in both countries in order to explore and prepare for future technologies.
At the end of the meeting, the Committee thanked the efforts exerted by the two sides, stressing the importance of implementing the agreed ‘Strategy of Resolve’ and the continuation of cooperation between the two countries in a way that strengthens the strong relationship between them.
Last June, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia and Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, chaired the first meeting of the Saudi-Emirati Coordination Council in Jeddah. The debut meeting served to announce the organisational structure of the Council, formed in May 2016 to strengthen bilateral cooperation in the areas of economy, human development, and political and military security integration, and the well-being of the societies of the two countries.
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