From June 20 to 21, the 2nd Round Negotiation of China-GCC FTA was held in Beijing. Wei Jianguo, Vice Minister of Commerce, took part in with a Chinese delegation from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, National Development and Reform Commission, Ministry of Finance, Customs General Administration and General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine. GCC delegation was led by Dr. Hamad Sulaiman Al-Bazi, the Coordinator-General for the Negotiation of GCC and Head of GCC Secretariat Delegation, including delegates from 6 members and officials of the Secretariat Delegation. The two sides held a negotiation on market access of FTA and rules of origin, and reached an agreement on tariff reduction mode of goods trade.

GCC is a regional organization in the Gulf Area, consisting of Saudi Arabia, United Arab Republic, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain. In recent years, the trade and economic relations among China and GCC members developed rapidly. From 1999 to 2004, the annual growth of bilateral trade between China and GCC rose at a rate of over 40%. In the first 4 months 2005, the bilateral trade amounted to US$9.8 billion, up by 42% on a year-on-year basis. Of which China exported US$3.7 billion to GCC and imported US$6.2 billion, up by 30% and 50% respectively. By the end of 2004, total value of the signed contracts of projects and labor service cooperation by China with GCC countries reached US$4 billion and 900 million respectively, turnover amounting to US$2.4 billion and 800 million. GCC totally invested 487 projects in China with a commitment of US$700 million and the actual use up to US$600 million.

It is learnt that China-GCC FTA Negotiation was launched in July 2004, and the initial negotiation was held in Riyadh, capital of Saudi Arabia, during April 23 to 24, 2005.

Approved by:MINISTRY OF COMMERCE,PRC     Supported by:China International Electronic Commerce Center