(MENAFN - Arab Times) As many as 124 companies in Kuwait allow Gulf nationals to own stocks, the largest number of firms among the six Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, a report by the GCC Secretariat said in a report Sunday. Saudi Arabia came second with 158 companies and Oman followed with 108 firms, showed the report, released ahead of the Dec 10-11 GCC Summit. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) came fourth with 79 companies, Bahrain with 43 firms and then Qatar with 42 firms. Around 453,000 GCC shareholders were registered in 2012 with the UAE attracting the largest segment, or 212,243 stock holders.
The UAE was followed by Qatar with 190,886 shareholders, Bahrain with 27,330, Oman with 15,474 shareholders, Saudi Arabia with 4,988 and then Kuwait with 1,792 stock holders. Some 50.2 percent of total shareholders were Saudi citizens, 15.9 percent Kuwaitis, 10.7 percent for each of the Bahraini and UAE nationals, Omanis with 8.5 percent and Qataris with 4.1 percent, said the report. A resolution adopted by the GCC leaders in the Doha Summit in 2002 stipulated equality amongst the Gulf citizens in terms of ownership of stocks and establishment of companies.