Leading retailer LuLu Hypermarket Qatar signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the embassy of North Macedonia on Sunday to promote business co-operation for import of agricultural produce, meat, meat products, Ajvar and cheese varieties of North Macedonian origin to Qatar.
Elma Altorok, chargé d' affaires, ambassador of the embassy of North Macedonia to Qatar, and Dr Mohamed Althaf, director of LuLu Hypermarket, signed the agreement at a ceremony at LuLu regional headquarters on D-Ring Road in the presence of officials from both organisations.
Under the MoU, the embassy will facilitate to establish trade relations between potential suppliers of North Macedonia and LuLu Hypermarket Qatar for regular import of products from that country to Qatar.
Speaking at the ceremony, Altorok said: “I am pleased to start negotiations to promote North Macedonian food in Qatar, in collaboration with LuLu Hypermarket. The initiative is designed to promote and exhibit a wide range of traditional 'Made in North Macedonia' products, while telling the unique story of the extraordinary Macedonian cuisine and food. We believe this is the beginning of a great success story that will help us raise awareness and appreciation of the local market towards North Macedonian food”.
Dr Althaf said: “I sincerely appreciate the gesture from the embassy of North Macedonia. I think, with all these interesting products that we start to bring in, this is the first time we are trying something like this. This will be the first opportunity for us to bring in products of North Macedonia to Qatar, and we are very happy for the interest in LuLu and for promoting the products of North Macedonian origin in Qatar. This will, no doubt, help Qatar and LuLu to diversify our sourcing operations now. We would be happy to add products of North Macedonian origin on our shelves.
"This MoU is the beginning of our journey. We will be exploring more and more product lines. We will together expand the categories, and I think this will be a huge boost for both North Macedonia, LuLu as well as Qatar in terms of import of products”, he said.
The first products that will be exported to Qatar are fruits and vegetables, meat and meat product (lamb), as well as Ajvar (can also be spelled Ayvar in English, renowned as one of the most popular culinary staples in North Macedonia) which is a traditional roasted pepper appetiser that dates back over centuries, cheese and healthy food products.
Dr Althaf stated that the unique products are aimed at presenting the Macedonian history and heritage.
"Due to their uniqueness and value, they are transforming the tradition into luxury. Our intentions are aimed at providing our partners and customers with all kinds of premium quality products from North Macedonia. Through a concerted effort, we are confident that we will provide customers with the best value in terms of quality, service and price.
"Most importantly, this initiative will provide the foundation for great economic relations between our business sectors and further improve the already great relations and friendship that exists between our counties on all levels," he added.