2018 to mark completion of GCC rail link

Dr Abdulatif Al Zayani
Dr Abdulatif Al Zayani

Secretary General of Gulf Cooperation Countries (GCC) Dr Abdulatif Al Zayani, speaks during the 10th International Institute for the Strategic Studies in Manama, Bahrain, on Saturday.

The GCC railway link project, which has been given top priority by the bloc’s leaders, would be completed by 2018, said Abdullatif Al-Zayani, GCC secretary-general. “The railway will increase trade and economic exchange between the member states,” he pointed out.

Stressing its tremendous economic and social impact, he said: “We have completed engineering designs for the project and technical and financial committees have been formed to conduct further studies and discuss matters related to connecting the railway with local networks.”

The Dec. 9-10 GCC summit in Doha is set to adopt significant resolutions on strengthening GCC security, combating terror and implementing vital joint projects such as the railway and water links, said Al-Zayani.

“It’s a summit of joy as the people of GCC countries are very happy over the reconciliation reached by the member countries during an emergency summit in Riyadh on Nov. 16 under the leadership of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah,” Al-Zayani said.

He said joint committees are also studying prospects of linking GCC water pipelines.

Speaking about efforts to realize the GCC common market, Al-Zayani said ministerial committees have been set up to remove the obstacles facing the project. He stressed the need to safeguard and strengthen the GCC to protect the interests of member countries and enhance their global reputation. “The Doha summit comes at a crucial time,” he said referring to the threats posed by terrorist groups to Gulf security. “We want to launch a major war on terrorism, considering all aspects. We believe that terrorism cannot be justified for any reason and so we have to fight terror including its supporters and funders,” he said.

Al-Zayani said the GCC rejects interference in Yemen’s internal affairs by foreign forces while supporting its independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity. He said GCC leaders would also look into the worsening situation of Arab refugees including Syrians. “They will review a number of ministerial reports on expanding cooperation in economic, military and security sectors.”

 
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