German Chancellor Angela Merkel welcomed the Qatari investments announced by His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani at the opening of Qatar- Germany Business and Investment Forum. The Qatari investments amount to 10bn euros and will be pumped into the German economy during the next five years.
At the opening session of Qatar Germany Business and Investment Forum, Merkel said Qatar will find in Germany competent business partners in addition to the appropriate economic and regulatory conditions adding that there are many opportunities for strengthening and expanding economic relations between the two countries. “We must exploit these opportunities, especially if we look at the tense situation in the Gulf region, which negatively affects the trade relations between the Gulf states,” she said.
Merkel also affirmed her country’s support for all constructive efforts to settle the Gulf crisis, including the efforts of the State of Kuwait, adding that we need a strong security structure in the Gulf to depend on, to solve conflicts and avoid them in the future. The current crisis has revealed the importance of a Gulf Co-operation Council capable of operating without restrictions as security and stability are indispensable foundations for economic prosperity.
She added that Germany is interested in deepening economic co-operation with Qatar, which is reflected in the great resonance of this forum. The German Chancellor said that she is delighted that Qatar Germany Business and Investment Forum is once again taking place in Berlin and Qatar demonstrates the importance it attaches to co-operation with Germany on the economic level.
“Qatar is geographically small but economically Qatar is an important country,” Merkel said. She added that during her visit to Qatar in 2010 she managed to visualise the growing economy, and during her visit to the Museum of Islamic Art in Doha, she was able to learn about the cultural richness of the country. “Since its independence in 1971, Qatar has developed into one of the richest countries in the world, so the economic relations between our two countries have grown significantly,” she said.
Merkel pointed out that Germany is the most important economic and trading partner of Doha after the United States and China. She also stressed that Qatar is one of the most important economic partners of Germany in the Gulf region with the volume of bilateral trade reaching more than 2.5bn euros.
More than good trade relations, she is pleased that Qatar is increasingly interested in investing in Germany, adding that that this interest is not coincidental, as Germany is among the most trusted investment destinations in the world.
She pointed out that this is not only due to the political stability of Germany, but the credit also goes to the German companies, which have a good reputation in the world markets, especially in the field of heavy industries and automobiles. Germany is also a leader in environment and medical technologies and it has seen a rapid growth in the number of companies in the field of information technology.
The German Chancellor stressed that the economic relations between the two countries do not go in one direction as Qatar offers great potential for German companies. And this is characterised by German companies’ great expertise and international experience, which are prerequisites for the expansion of the infrastructure sector and the industrial sector in Qatar, especially in the field of energy. Qatar is the largest source of LNG and plans to expand its production potential in the coming years.
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