Pakistan-Qatar; Movements to enhance bilateral ties

Islamabad, Sept 30, IRNA – Pakistan and Qatar have been enjoying close ties and the Foreign Ministers of the two countries during a meeting on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session have vowed to strengthen the ties by forging partnerships and enhancing economic and trade relations.

Pakistan Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi and his Qatari counterpart Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani also welcomed increase in the bilateral trade by 53%.

Pakistani foriegn minister stressed unleashing the great economic potential between the two countries by increasing the exports of food items, construction material, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, sports goods and fabrics.

The Foreign Minister of Qatar also emphasized the need to activate all the existing institutional mechanisms between the two countries, to take bilateral relations to the next level.

Meanwhile President and Chief Executive Officer of Qatar Petroleum, Sherida Al-Kaabi met with Prime Minister Imran Khan in Islamabad and briefed him on the Qatar Petroleum’s global portfolio and activities.

The president and chief executive of Qatar Petroleum also showed keen desire to enhance the company’s investment in Pakistan.

Prime Minister Imran Khan welcomed investment by Qatar Petroleum in Pakistan’s energy and petroleum sectors and assured the CEO of the government’s full support and cooperation in that regard.

Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani had also invited Prime Minister Imran Khan for an official visit to the Kingdom. Al-Thani expressed his desire to expand ties with the incoming government in Pakistan.

There is a large Pakistani community in Qatar which numbers over 50,000. They work in diverse fields and send remittances each year.

The bilateral trade volume between Qatar and Pakistan witnessed a remarkable tripled digit-growth last year compared to previous year.

The bilateral trade volume is set to witness further jump in the coming years as both the countries are working in close cooperation to further strengthen and deep economic cooperation in several promising areas.

There were reports that Qatar’s Prime Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani during a meeting with Pakistan’s Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa had expressed his desire to learn from Pakistan Army's experience in security domain and also sought assistance during forthcoming Football World Cup including provision of manpower.

Earlier Pakistan’s Caretaker Federal Minister for Commerce, Textile and Industry Production, Mian Misbah-ur-Rehman had suggested that Qatar could procure goods and services from Pakistan for the upcoming FIFA World Cup, scheduled to be held in Qatar in 2022.

“As Qatar is preparing for hosting FIFA World Cup 2022, substantial scope exists for procurement of goods and services from Pakistan,” the minister said while addressing Pakistan-Qatar Business Conference here Thursday.

Speaking on the occasion, Qatar Minister of Economy and Commerce, Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim bin Mohammed Al Thani said joint trade and investment relationship between Pakistan and Qatar gained considerable momentum back in year 2012.

He said that currently there were about 851 companies jointly owned by Pakistanis and Qataris operating in Qatar in various fields of economy.

In 2016 Pakistan and Qatar had signed a multi-billion dollar liquefied natural gas (LNG) deal which would see it import the fuel for 16 years to meet domestic energy requirements.

The two countries apart from the LNG deal, had also signed agreements to enhance cooperation in the fields of radio and television, health and academic research activities.

During the 2010 Pakistan floods, Qatar provided timely assistance to the country.

Pakistani parliamentary committee on national security had advised the government to stay neutral in the crisis between Qatar and some Arab states, including Saudi Arabia.
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