GCC finance ministers shelve Dubai debt crisis in Kuwait meeting

13:39, December 14, 2009      

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Finance ministers of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) on Sunday shelved the Dubai debt crisis in their meeting in Kuwait, a day ahead of the bloc's leaders 30thsummit.

That move beat expectations as Sunday's gathering was the first among GCC finance ministers after the indebted Dubai World asked for a six-month standstill on 59 billion U.S. dollars, which caused panic among investors and stock markets to plunge several days in a row.

A report from the official KUNA news agency said the ministers discussed the financial and economic situation in GCC countries in general.

Kuwait's Finance Minister Mustafa Al-Shamali said after the annual event the ministers reached an agreement to activate the monetary union agreement, a prelude to the initiated single Gulf currency.

But he did not specify whether the monetary union could be launched during the leaders' summit as expected.

Another issue that topped their agenda was the common customs policy, al-Shamali said, adding Tuesday's summit would witness the official launch of the power grid linkage project among GCC countries.

Founded in 1981, the GCC groups Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The six together holds around 45 percent of the world's proven oil reserves.

Members of the oil-rich bloc have strived for economic integration in the past years as stand together that has been proven effective in meeting challenges amid complicated world economic climate.

Source: Xinhua
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