On 12 November, Muscat will be the venue of the final conference of the two-year project “Sharaka – Enhancing Understanding and Cooperation in EU-GCC Relations”. International experts will gather at the Crowne Plaza Hotel to discuss about the latest, most strategic developments in the troubled yet pivotal relation between the European Union (EU) and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). The aim of the conference, as implied in the event’s title “Learning from the Past, Looking at the Future”, will be to take stock of the progress achieved in EU-GCC relations over the past 30 years and to assess the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.
The conference will bring together some 30 experts in a one-day event, exploring and discussing existing divergences as well as the extent and potential for EU-GCC cooperation in finance and investments; economic and trade cooperation; energy, environment and climate change; transport and maritime security; media and communications; and higher education and scientific research. The event will be closed by a roundtable discussion and open Q&A session that will allow participants to interact and dialogue with the experts. The list of invitees includes first and foremost representatives from the authorities in the Sultanate of Oman, as well as from the other GCC countries, diplomats from EU member states, as well as from the European Commission, side by side with key economic stakeholders, academics, civil society and media people from the Gulf and European countries.