Gulf Union to become a reality soon

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Gulf Union to become a reality soon

Gulf Union to become a reality soon

(Manama) – A Gulf Union with a unified currency, army, and foreign policy would become a reality soon according to Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and First Deputy Prime Minister HRH Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa.

In this regard, Prince Salman further affirmed that a ‘ One Visa for all GCC countries’ will be achieved if a Customs Union takes place and the GCC immigration authorities are linked.

Commenting further, Prince Salman said one of the achievements we have made in the GCC is capping the percentage of customs duties.

“The customs duties in Bahrain was 20pc, the highest rate today is 5pc. Defence and security agreements may not be felt by the citizens directly, but the movement of people is felt.”

“The next phase, will involve the alignment of immigration authorities and the technologies of immigration – perhaps at some point even a unified visa, such as the Schengen visa issued in Europe, that we would issue for expatriates,” he said.

Concerning the economic side, the Crown Prince said that a GCC citizen can travel without a passport, and own real estate in any one of the six countries, and own companies for the first time.

“When I was young, there were no companies that I could really name as GCC companies. Today if we look, I believe there are around 40,000 commercial registrations for GCC citizens in other GCC countries.”

Prince Khalifa also pointed out electricity and water grids as one of the major GCC achievements, and that it has almost become a unified network in all GCC countries.

“If there was a shortage in Bahrain, it could be supplied from Qatar and Saudi Arabia and vice versa,” he said

Prince Khalifa also affirmed the commencement of the Gulf Union soon. Referring to the infra-structure projects in the future, the Crown Prince said that a railway link can be expected in the next ten years.