Unlike recent sentiment in some parts of the world, collaboration and cooperation between countries has generally been positive for the development of both countries. Whether it is a bilateral trade agreement or a more in-depth cooperation such as the European Union or North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the countries benefit from each others strengths and strengthen their economies accordingly.
The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) is another excellent example of that, as well as the Saudi-Emirati Coordination Council.
Recently, the Saudi-Emirati Coordination Council revealed seven initiatives to bolster the economic development of both countries. The initiatives, which cover a range of sectors such as cryptocurrency, civil aviation and customs, aim to strengthen economic, social and military integration between the two countries.
1. Cryptocurrency pilot project
The first initiative, a cross-border digital currency, will be strictly targeted at banks during an experimental phase with the aim of better understanding the implications of blockchain technology and facilitating cross-border payments.
2. Easy flow of traffic at entry ports
This will allow for the easy flow of traffic at the entry ports between the UAE and Saudi Arabia. The use of fast track system at customs points will further enable the flow of traffic. 40 companies from UAE and 41 from KSA have been listed on the network of “authorised economic operators” to enable this free movement.
3. Support SMEs via a joint platform
The joint platform developed by the two countries will allow SMEs registered on the platform to benefit from the government procurement allocations from both the countries and compete on federal government procurements.
4. Financial awareness programme for children
State agency WAM reported that the programme will teach the basics of finance to 7-18 year old children; enabling "them to simulate the business world to learn about saving and smart spending, as well as understand the culture of entrepreneurship through customised training courses.”
5. Joint exercise to test the supply security system
The countries will run a joint training exercise to test how their supply chain security systems perform in a crisis or natural disaster. The exercise will aim to identify potential points of improvement as well as form a plan for improvement.
6. Friendly airports for People of Determination
The initiative will see the airports become more friendly to People of Determination, through compliance improvements and training of airport crew.
7. Common market for civil aviation
This initiative will aim to integrate and increase cooperation in the civil aviation sector in the areas of air navigation, safety and security, air accident investigations and more.