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As GCC turns 40, all eyes on post-oil era

The GCC alliance hopes for greater future economic growth in the Gulf.
A flame from a Saudi Aramco oil installion known as "Pump 3" is seen in the desert near the oil-rich area of Khouris, 160 kms east of the Saudi capital Riyadh, on June 23, 2008.

“The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) has proven all skeptics wrong from day one until today,” Emirati political scientist Abdulkhaleq Abdulla told Al-Monitor. Forty years after the rulers of the six Gulf Arab states met on May 25, 1981, at the InterContinental Abu Dhabi Hotel to attend the first GCC summit, the political and economic alliance is still alive and well.

Over the span of four decades, the GCC reaffirmed existing social ties and shaped a stronger “Khaleeji identity,” Abdulla said, in reference to a term referring to a person from one of the GCC states. “There are now about 30 million Khaleejis today who say they are Khaleejis.”

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