Dubai Customs is urging the region’s freight forwarding industry to establish a trade corridor that allows trucks to move between countries without barriers.

Ahmed Mahboob Musabih, Dubai Customs director, said that customs and non-customs agencies across the GCC region must simplify formalities and utilise the latest smart information technology (IT) tools to achieve this goal. “Using the latest IT tools in information-sharing, control and inspection… enables trucks to move between countries in a much faster manner without jeopardising the security of communities and exposing them to the risks of illicit trade,” Musabih said.

Trucking is the most used mode of freight transportation across the GCC, with more than 1 million trucks currently in operation across the region, Emirates News Agency (WAM) said. The number of active trucks is estimated to increase between 5 and 9 per cent each year.

Greater integration among the region’s customs processes is seen to strengthen its position as a global trading partner.

Foreign trade for the six GCC member states is valued at $1.3 trillion in 2014, registering a four-fold increase from the $261bn recorded in 2000, according to WAM. Intra-GCC trade saw seven-fold increase between 2002 – before the GCC Customs Union was formed – and 2014, from $15bn to $124bn.