by Dylan Bowman on Saturday, 05 July 2008

Al Saidi has said the GCC will become the world's fifth biggest economy if it continues to grow at its current rate. (Getty Images)

The Gulf region will be the fifth biggest economy in the world by 2020 if it continues to grow at its current rate, the Dubai International Financial Centre’s (DIFC) chief economist said on Friday.

Speaking at the International Financial Forum in Paris, Nasser Al Saidi also said the GCC single currency would become one of the world’s most powerful, state news agency WAM reported.

“The region is growing fast, 11 percent a year. At this rate the GCC will be the [world’s] fifth biggest economy in 2020 and its single currency will emerge as a global currency alongside the euro and the dollar,” he was quoted as saying.

Around 1,200 representatives of investors, banks and financial institutions attended the International Financial Forum, which included 3 GCC-focused panel discussions showcasing the growing importance of the region in global finance.

The sessions included one on the role of long term investors in the global economy, with particular focus on sovereign wealth funds (SWFs), cooperation opportunities in the GCC and development sin Islamic finance.


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