Reinforced by high-level meetings and mutual visits by officials of both countries, the growing relationship between Qatar and the US will continue to develop, a senior Qatar Businessmen Association (QBA) official said.

QBA chairman Sheikh Faisal bin Qassim al-Thani made the statement during a meeting with retired US Air Force General Norton A Schwartz, who is the president and CEO of Business Executives for National Security (BENS).

Schwartz was in Qatar recently with a US delegation, which held several meetings with Qatari authorities, including QBA first deputy Hussein Alfardan and QBA members Khaled al-Mannai, Salah al-Jaidah, Saud al-Mana, and Mohamed Althaf, including deputy general manager Sarah Abdullah.

Sheikh Faisal lauded the efforts of His Highness the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani to enhance opportunities for co-operation and to support economic relations between Qatar and the US.

Similarly, Schwartz stressed that Qatar-US relations are based on solid foundations and strategic partnerships. He said BENS is a non-profit organisation comprising more than 450 senior executives from the business and industry sectors who are volunteering their expertise to address the challenges in the national security community as well as other issues like cybersecurity.

During the meeting, QBA members underscored Qatar’s “fair reputation” before the global community and the outpouring of international support from many countries during the economic blockade imposed on Qatar since June last year.

Immediately after the blockade began, the private sector was able to work with its counterparts in other countries, and received “positive and quick reactions” from international companies.

Sheikh Faisal stressed that the Qatari economy had overcome the economic and financial impact of the blockade, and was able to immediately create effective links and partnerships with different countries to find suitable alternatives to meet the needs of the Qatari market, while working to achieve self-sufficiency.

“The blockade has contributed to our unification to work on a single goal and achieve Qatar’s self-sufficiency,” Sheikh Faisal said.

According to Alfardan, the Qatari economy will become stronger after the blockade because of government initiatives that had opened up the economy by providing attractive opportunities to foreign investors and attracting more foreign direct investments into Qatar.

“I believe in Qatar’s ability to export its national products to the world soon,” Alfardan said.

The meeting also focused on Qatar’s unique geographical location and its sea and airport, which would contribute in connecting Qatar with its international partners. The meeting also underscored the Qatari business community’s keen interest to develop economic and investment relations with the global community.

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