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Australia-Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)

About the Australia-GCC FTA negotiations

Australia and Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE)) share a significant economic relationship, encompassing trade and investment across a broad range of goods and services.

The GCC is an established market for a range of Australian exports including agricultural products like live animals, meat, dairy, vegetables, sugar, wheat, and other grains, as well as automotive and resources exports. The majority of Australia’s goods trade with the Middle East is with the GCC, accounting for $11.1 billion in two-way goods trade in 2021. It is also a growing market for services and investment, with strong opportunities in infrastructure, education and professional services.

Free Trade Agreement negotiations with the GCC commenced in July 2007. Four rounds of Australia-GCC FTA negotiations were held, with the last one occurring in June 2009. Negotiations with the GCC were subsequently paused and there have been no further negotiating rounds.

At the GCC Leader’s Summit in January 2021, the GCC renewed its interest in pursuing an FTA with Australia (and other key countries) as a priority market.

Stakeholder consultation process

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) is seeking stakeholder submissions on the potential opportunities and impacts of a possible FTA with the GCC. DFAT is particularly interested in details of specific impediments to trade and investment that the agreement could address. This information will help inform the Australian Government’s approach to a potential resumption of negotiations on an FTA with the GCC.

All submissions will be treated as public and may be published on this website, unless the author specifically requests that the submission, or part thereof, be handled in confidence. Unless otherwise requested, DFAT will publish the submission and the name of the submitting organisation or individual on its website. DFAT will not edit submissions prior to publishing. All details that have been included in a submission, including contact information, will be available on the DFAT website.

Submitters may request that all, or part, of a submission be treated as confidential. Material supplied in-confidence should be clearly marked 'IN CONFIDENCE' and be provided in a separate attachment to non-confidential material.

By making a submission, the author(s) agree to their submission, or part thereof, being used by the Commonwealth of Australia for Commonwealth purposes.

Written submissions can be emailed to

A written submission on the GCC FTA can also be made as part of a response to the request for stakeholder submissions on a prospective Australia-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA). Further information is available at Australia-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement

DFAT will continue to provide information and updates on this website. Requests for additional information can also be made by email to

Submissions received [PDF]

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