The ongoing blockade has severed family ties across the GCC countries and restricted the movement of people in the region, but it has also managed to enhance solidarity among the inhabitants of Qatar and united citizens and expatriates in firmly supporting the country and its leadership, it is generally felt.
Speaking to local Arabic daily Arrayah, a considerable number of people have reiterated that the blockade has been an eye-opening experience for the country and its people. It has helped assess the actual potential of the country and how to optimise the use of national resources in order to meet the demands of the local market, they point out.
The blockade has opened more avenues for the country to realise its potential and helped diversify plans for both local production and imports.
Jamal al-Suwaidi, a Qatari man, said the siege has given people a good lesson in identifying weaknesses in the local market and also provided an impetus to encourage national production, particularly of food items. Besides, new direct routes of trade have been introduced to ease the flow of goods to and from the country.
Ibrahim al-Darwish, another citizen, stressed that the blockade's positive impact on the local community is most evident in the solidarity witnessed among people from sections of society. They have stood united in the face of rumours targeting the country, he points out.
"The blockade has made one thing clear -who is the enemy and who is the friend. Also, now we are becoming more independent in supplying all our needs. I hope all basic items are produced locally in the near future," he said.
Abdulrazik al-Emadi, a Qatari businessman, said local farms have increased their production after the siege began to meet the growing local demand. He explained that both land and water supply are available in the country, which can facilitate the supply of around 70% of the local requirements soon.
"Due to the blockade, we managed to find alternative ways and went directly to East Asia, Japan and Europe, opening new trade routes with new clients and companies without any intermediates. This will reflect positively on reducing commodity prices in the future," he added.
Misfar al-Yami said the siege experience has proven clearly that the country has adopted a practical and comprehensive strategy covering all fields, and is ready to face any challenges successfully and efficiently.
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