Yemen seeks GCC aid to revive battered economy

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Anti-government protesters raise bread as a symbol of poverty during a protest that demanded better economic conditions in Sanaa, Yemen. Photo -Muhammed Muheisen/AP Photo

The newly sworn Yemeni President will visit Saudi Arabia to meet King Abdullah and thank him for the role he played during the Arab Uprising, a Saudi newspaper reported. He also hoped that Riyadh will keep playing a crucial role in the country’s politics and help it from further destabilisation, the English language daily quoted him as saying.

In an interview with Saudi Gazette, President Abdo Rabbu Mansour Hadi said he and King Abdullah will discuss ways to strengthen Yemeni-Saudi relations during his upcoming visit to the Kingdom.

Sources close to the Yemeni government said Sanaa will seek to secure $3 billion aid pledged by the Gulf Cooperation Council nations. The handout has been withheld by the oil-rich neighbours citing violence and political instability in the country.

Yemen is the most poorest country in the Middle East with a paltry $2,500 GDP per capita compared to that of GCC nations which is at least ten times higher.

President Hadi vowed to revive the Yemeni economy battered after year long crisis that took the country on the brink of collapse. Political reconciliation still remains a contentious issue in Yemen as it grapples with Al Qaeda insurgency, Houthi tribes’ rebellion and mounting secessionist activities in the southern provinces.

According to the UN, Yemen ranks 151st out of 177 countries on its Human Development Index, which gauges life expectancy, education and standard of living.

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