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The Malfunctioning of the Gulf Cooperation Council Single Market: Features, Causes and Remedies

Abdulghaffar, Mahmood and Al-Ubaydli, Omar and Mahmood, Omar (2014): The Malfunctioning of the Gulf Cooperation Council Single Market: Features, Causes and Remedies. Published in: Middle Eastern Finance and Economics No. 19 (2013): pp. 54-67.

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Abstract

Five years after its inception, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) single market is malfunctioning in a litany of ways: there remain restrictions on the movement of goods, capital and labor across political boundaries. This paper describes the GCC single market’s malfunctions. We also propose remedies, taking advantage of the single market experiences of, among others, the European Union. A key conclusion is that there is an absence of GCC supranational political institutions powerful enough to enforce rules, with the exception of the Supreme Council, which is itself not designed to deal with day-to-day issues such as enforcing a single market. Consequently, the GCC needs to alter its institutional structure if it wants the single market to operate correctly.

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