AMMAN (JT) - Jordanian and Saudi officials will meet next week to discuss Jordan’s request to replace its unilateral commercial agreements with Gulf states with a free trade agreement.
When the Joint Jordanian-Saudi Higher Committee convenes in Amman on Sunday, officials will discuss with their peers from the Gulf kingdom ways to support Jordan's wish for stronger economic ties with member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), according to a Ministry of Industry and Trade statement.
Maha Ali, the ministry’s secretary general, said in the statement that during the meetings, both parties will look into means to reach an agreement to regulate economic and trade relations.
The two sides will also seek to remove obstacles that may face commercial ties between Jordan and the GCC states.
The free trade agreement that Jordan is working to achieve is also meant to enhance joint investments and the flow of capital and labour between the Kingdom and Gulf countries, Ali said.
At the meetings, to be headed by Minister of Industry and Trade Amer Hadidi and Saudi Transport Minister Jabara Seraisry, the committee will examine ways to increase Jordanian exports to the Saudi market in addition to discussing cooperation in the fields of health, agriculture, energy, education and media among others.
Trade exchange between Jordan and Saudi Arabia during the first seven months of this year reached over JD1.3 billion with local exports reaching JD244 million while imports from the eastern neighbour accounted for JD1.08 billion, said the statement.
Saudi investment during the first seven months of 2010, benefiting from the Investment Promotion Law, reached $1.4 billion, while the value of Saudi investments on the Amman Stock Exchange are estimated at $2 billion, making Saudi Arabia among the top 10 countries investing in Jordan, according to the statement.