Total trade volume between Qatar and Japan stood at $16bn in 2018, a 23% growth compared to the $13.1bn recorded in the previous year, said Qatar Chamber chairman Sheikh Khalifa bin Jassim al-Thani in a speech delivered at the ‘Qatar-Japan Business Forum’ in Tokyo on Wednesday.
“Qatar and Japan enjoy deep-rooted economic and trade cooperation relations covering all areas. Both countries are keen on strengthening further their investment and business cooperation for the advantage of both the economies,” said Sheikh Khalifa.
The ‘Qatar-Japan Business Forum’ was organised by the Ministry of Finance as part of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani’s visit to South Korea, Japan, and China.
According to Sheikh Khalifa, Qatar and Japan’s private sectors “play key roles in bolstering these relations,” adding that Qatar’s continuous supply of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Japan for more than 20 years (since 1997) 'emphasises both countries’ firm commitment and mutual confidence.”
“Japan is an attractive investment destination to the Qatari private sector. Qatari businessmen are interested to recognise the investment opportunities available in Japan and establish more alliances and partnerships with their Japanese counterparts,” he said.
Sheikh Khalifa said there are 27 companies operating in the state of Qatar that are 100% wholly-owned Japanese businesses, and 24 companies with Qatari partners working in electrical equipment, petroleum services, water desalination, and information technology with an estimated investment of $3bn.
To attract more local and foreign investments, Sheikh Khalifa said Qatar “has built distinguished infrastructure,” including economic and logistic zones and provided industrial lands, and offered facilities to motivate foreign companies to enter the Qatari market.
Sheikh Khalifa also spoke on the economic blockade imposed on Qatar since June 2017, saying the unjust siege “stimulated the private sector” to lessen its dependence on imports and increase production to meet needs of the local market.
“The country has successfully managed to defeat the siege, thanks to the measures adopted by the government, and for pursuing legislative reforms that contributed to strengthening the national economy competitiveness in line with Qatar National Vision 2030,” Sheikh Khalifa stressed.
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