56 per cent increase in trade as Oman, Qatar eye more jvs
MUSCAT: His Highness Sayyid Asaad bin Tareq al Said, Deputy Prime Minister for International Relations and Cooperation Affairs, Personal Representative of His Majesty the Sultan, received at his office on Thursday Ali Shareef al Emadi, Minister of Finance in the sisterly State of Qatar. Cordial conversations were exchanged, and aspects of the existing cooperation between the two countries were discussed in several fields of common concern.
Meanwhile, the Oman-Qatar Joint Committee held its meeting in Muscat on Thursday, during which it reviewed aspects of cooperation between the two countries in various fields that serve the common interests, especially the investment projects.
The Omani side was led by Darwish bin Ismaeel al Balushi, Minister Responsible for Financial Affairs, and Ali Sharif al Emadi, Minister of Finance in Qatar.
Al Balushi praised the good relations between the two countries, stressing that they are a solid example of brotherly relations based on the ties between the two peoples, the bonds of love and the common interests and common aspirations for a brighter future and sustainable development whose strength stems from the sincere will and generous care of the wise leaderships of the two countries, which led to the organisation of the joint effort, the development of bilateral cooperation and the exchange of experiences and expertise.
He said the progress achieved by the committee in its previous sessions and over the past years has made it an example in the field of bilateral cooperation where it worked to overcome difficulties and remove obstacles which may come in the completion of investment projects, noting the most remarkable achievements in this area including signing of memoranda of understanding and joint programmes in several areas, most recently a memorandom adopted during the previous session in the field of higher education, consumer protection and banks, as well as providing support and facilities to Qatar Primary Material Company for obtaining necessary concessions to carry out its work in quarries in the Wilayat of Shinas.
Al Balushi said that the committee is moving forward to complete projects of mutual interest, including investment projects in Duqm economic zone and in agriculture, fisheries and livestock. He said that the trade relations between the two countries witnessed a remarkable development in terms of volume of exchange during the past years, praising the efforts made by the chambers of commerce, joint venture companies and businessmen.
Expressing his satisfaction with the achievements made by the committee in various fields, he expressed the hope that this good march will continue in the achievement of further progress and achievements, stressing the need to increase efforts and hard work in the two countries and concerted efforts to promote mutual cooperation.
On his part, Sharif al Emadi thanked the Sultanate for hosting the meetings of the 20th session of the Oman-Qatar Joint Committee which underlines the strong brotherly relations between the Sultanate and Qatar led by His Majesty Sultan Qaboos and Shaikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani, Emir of Qatar.
He pointed out that the committee has become particularly important in enhancing economic cooperation in view of the fundamental developments witnessed in the economic relations between the Sultanate and Qatar during this period.
He added: “This is evident by 56 per cent increase in trade exchange during the first quarter of 2019 to QR2.1 billion compared to QR1.3 billion during the year 2018.”
He added that despite this strong growth, the volume of trade exchange is still limited compared to the volume of trade between the two countries, and the outside world, which does not reach the level of ambition, looking forward to enhancing cooperation and joint investments in various economic fields, including agriculture, transportation, tourism and other sectors.
He said that the two countries are seeking to complete the projects currently under way, especially in tourism and real estate sectors, including Ras Al Hadd Project, Al Meera Group projects in foodstuff and transportation, Karwa Motors Project, boosting Qatari investments in Duqm, energy cooperation and Nebras Power Company, expansion of cooperation in the sectors of education, culture and sport, provide training opportunities for students from both countries in the field of supporting small and medium enterprises, cooperation and exchange of experiences in support of small and medium enterprises, partnership in the marketing of products of these projects and building materials and gabbro quarries, in addition to continuing to discuss MoUs and agreements of cooperation in several areas, including the legal field, maritime transport and education.
The Qatari minister stressed the importance of overcoming obstacles facing the joint venture projects and expressed the hope that a permanent mechanism would be put in place to face current and future obstacles to support and expand joint investments between the two countries.