Qatar has taken all necessary procedures, upon the directive of His Highness the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, to counter the effects of the illegal blockade imposed upon it by the siege countries, HE the Minister of Economy and Commerce Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim bin Mohamed al-Thani said yesterday. 

HE Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim bin Mohamed al-Thani with Dr Francis Gurry, Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organisation.

The Minister, who met a number of heads of international trade and economic organisations in Geneva, Switzerland, said Qatar has taken steps to maintain the stability of the local market and the flow of goods into the country. 
Discussing the implications of the crisis, the Minister pointed out that Saudi-led bloc imposed the blockade against Qatar without any warning. This is in violation of international laws, conventions and norms and contrary to intellectual property rights as well as the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement, which stipulates the need to ensure that no obstacles are placed in trade between the member-countries. 
The blockading countries closed land, sea and air routes to Qatar, banned the passage of Qatari aircraft, and prevented ships carrying cargoes and goods for Qatar at their country’s ports from proceeding to Qatar, in addition to banning any exports of their national products to Qatar. 
They also banned their banks from dealing in Qatari riyal and did not allow cargo or postal services to or from Qatar in addition to the blockade imposed on Qatari goods and investments at their counties and preventing dealings with Qatari companies and investors without any compensation.
The Minister of Economy and Commerce stressed the strength of the Qatari economy and its ability to face and overcome difficulties and challenges. He said Qatar’s gross national savings, equivalent to 56% of the country’s GDP, is the highest in the world.
HE Sheikh Ahmed and the accompanying delegation also met a number of lawyers working for a legal firm specialising in World Trade Organisation cases. A contract was signed with this firm to study the illegal procedures taken by the blockading countries against Qatar.
The Minister of Economy and Commerce also held meetings with Roberto Azevedo, director general of the World Trade Organisation; professor Klaus Schwab, president of the World Economic Forum; and Dr Francis Gurry, director general of the World Intellectual Property Organisation. 
HE Sheikh Ahmed further affirmed that Qatar would take all necessary legal procedures to sue the blockading countries and take steps to demand compensation for the losses incurred by the Qatari private sector.

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