Qatar and Jordan are in the “final stages’ of negotiations for the establishment of a storage and logistics hub in Doha, according to a member of the Jordanian parliament, who said the project is expected to double the value of both countries’ trade volume by 2019.
Senator Nael Raja al-Kabariti, who is also the chairman of the Jordan Chamber of Commerce, said the storage and logistics hub will be utilised for the development of Jordan’s agricultural exports to Qatar.
“The meetings are led by private sector players of both sides. So to speak, 70% of the road towards this agreement has been crossed already. We are in the final stages and hopefully in a few weeks’ time it would be announced,” al-Kabariti told reporters on the sidelines of a meeting with Qatar Chamber officials.
Al-Kabariti also noted that the project aims to lift trade and economic relations between Qatar and Jordan, as well as to increase the flow of foreign direct investments of both countries.
“The logistics and storage hub will facilitate the trade of agriculture and pharmaceutical goods with Qatar. We import a lot of pharmaceuticals and medicine from Qatar, as well,” he noted.
According to al-Kabariti, Qatar-Jordan trade balance now stands between $400mn and $500mn, while Qatari investments in Jordan amounted to some $2bn, the third largest in the country.
“I am sure that in 2018 and 2019, trade volume between Jordan and Qatar would double…and we are also looking to increase Jordan’s investment in Qatar,” he emphasised.
Aside from storage and logistics, al-Kabariti said Jordan is trying to increase co-operation ties in the field of industrial, services, and IT sectors.
Qatar Chamber chairman Sheikh Khalifa bin Jassim bin Mohamed al-Thani said imports from Jordan are mostly fruits and vegetables, as well as livestock. Qatari investments in Jordan, he continued, are mostly in the banking, shopping centre, and real estate sectors.
He also lauded Jordan for its uninterrupted exports especially after Saudi Arabia led an unjust economic blockade against Qatar in June 2017. “We were surprised that in 2017, trade volume did not decrease…and they managed to find other routes for their exports to Qatar,” he said.
“There are many Jordanian investors in Qatar and we see a lot of their companies opening here even after the blockade, and they are interested in the Qatari market, especially since most of their goods are coming from other Gulf countries and now they want to concentrate and open a direct hub here and they are also interested in our free zones,” Sheikh Khalifa added.
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