His Highness the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani attended the reception held on Tuesday by the US-Qatar Business Council and the US Chamber of Commerce in Washington.
Delivering the welcome speech on the occasion, the Emir highlighted the most prominent features of the Qatar-US economic co-operation. He said there are more than 650 US companies operating in Qatar and the volume of trade between Qatar and the United States has reached $125bn, and that the plan is to double this figure in the near future.
The Emir pointed out that Qatar is the fastest growing economy in the Middle East and expressed the hope to work hand in hand with the US.
US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, President and Board Chairman of the US Chamber of Commerce Thomas Donohue, President of the US-Qatar Business Council ambassador Anne Patterson, and HE the Minister of Economy and Commerce Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim bin Mohamed al-Thani spoke highlighting the strong Qatari-US relations and the co-operation in economy, trade and investment as well as the volume of trade exchange between the two countries. They also underlined the promising future opportunities in these areas for the benefit of both countries.
The speakers also lauded the strong Qatari economy and its rapid growth despite the siege.
The reception was attended by a number of ministers, current and former members of Congress and ambassadors, as well as prominent politicians and businessmen.
On the Qatari side, it was attended by members of the official delegation accompanying the Emir and a number of businessmen.
His Highness the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani with US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.
The Emir and the audience exchanged views on ways to enhance co-operation between Qatar and the US in various fields including politics, economy, trade and investment.
His Highness the Emir held talks with Thomas Donohue, Patterson and Vice-President for Middle East Affairs Khush Choksy.
Discussions during their meetings dealt with a number of topics of mutual interest, particularly with regard to the economic, commercial and investment aspects and means of enhancing them.
Addressing the audience, the economy minister said that during the last five years, the volume of trade between Qatar and the US reached about $24bn, noting that 84% of the trade balance between the two countries, equivalent to $20bn, tends to favour the United States, which is the first source of imports to the country in 2017. Some 16% of Qatar's total imports came from the US.
The minister said Qatar has increased its investment in the United States and this has contributed to the provision of thousands of jobs across America. The investments included partnerships with several US companies including ExxonMobil, Boeing, ConocoPhillips and Raytheon.
He pointed out that there are about 15,000 US citizens in Qatar including about 5,000 working in jobs that require high skills within the private sector.
Speaking about Qatari investments in the United States, the minister said Qatar Airways has allocated about $92bn to support the US economy by purchasing 332 US-made aircraft, contributing to more than 527,000 job opportunities. The total value of exports and confirmed orders amounted to about $146bn, which in turn contributed to the provision of one million US jobs based on existing investments with Qatar, he said.
He also referred to the role of Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), which has allocated $45bn of investments for the period 2015-2020. Of this $10bn is meant for investment in the infrastructure sector, pointing out that these investments account for about 23% of Qatar's GDP.