The Embassy of the State of Qatar Office of the Commercial Attaché, US-Qatar Business Council (USQBC), and the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) have collaborated on a visit to the State of Indiana to engage with the local business community and key policymakers to enhance economic partnerships between Qatar and Indiana.
The visit featured Eric Holcomb, governor of the State of Indiana; Fahad al-Dosari, Commercial Attaché of the Embassy of the State of Qatar to the US; Brad Chambers, Secretary of Commerce for the State of Indiana and CEO of Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC); and Mohamed Barakat, managing director of USQBC.
Fahad al-Dosari, Commercial Attaché of the Embassy of the State of Qatar to the US, in a huddle with Eric Holcomb, governor of the State of Indiana
This visit highlighted potential partnerships and investment opportunities specific for Indiana companies while also identifying key areas of interest, how Indiana-based companies can start conducting business in Qatar, and what resources are available to them.
“Business between Indiana and Qatar demonstrates tremendous economic potential. Qatar represents an important destination for Indiana exports and investment and enhancing business partnerships will lead to economic growth for the State and jobs for Indiana families,” said Holcomb.
Earlier this year, Holcomb led an economic development trip to Qatar to foster new relationships to advance innovation, investment, and job creation in Indiana. Holcomb was accompanied by Chambers and IEDC staff members.
“The State of Qatar is committed to expanding the economic partnership with Indiana. We look forward to further conversations on how our business communities can work together in areas such as manufacturing, agriculture, logistics, and sports, among others,” said al-Dosari.
According to the IEDC, Indiana is the fourth-largest exporter of goods to Qatar in the Midwest and the 12th-largest in the US. In 2020, Indiana exported more than $43mn worth of goods to Qatar, including chemicals, electrical equipment, appliance components, and transportation equipment. During the same time period, Indiana imported $76,637 worth of goods. Indiana is also represented in the US Congressional Caucus on Qatar.
“Indiana is committed to expanding business partnerships and trade with the State of Qatar. I had the honour of travelling to Qatar earlier this year with Governor Holcomb, which reinforced the opportunities that exist for increased engagement and partnership that could benefit a variety of sectors throughout Indiana,” said Chambers.
Growing areas of overlap between Qatar and Indiana include sports technology, defence, agriculture, and manufacturing. Since announcing the 2022 FIFA World Cup, Qatar has emerged as a premier host for international sporting events, driving innovations in sports tech.
Additionally, through the country’s rapid development, Qatar has become a leader in Smart City infrastructure while also offering premier facilities as a gateway for companies looking to establish a footprint in the wider Middle East, Africa, and Asian region.
“Indiana and the State of Qatar are already close economic partners and this visit demonstrates the commitment to expand this relationship. We look forward to advancing Indiana's businesses in their international expansion and export development,” said Barakat.
US investment in Qatar continues to increase year over year due to Qatar’s ambitious pro-business reforms and infrastructure investment. The US is Qatar’s largest foreign direct investor with a total of $110.6bn in FDI and is the largest single source of exports to Qatar at $6.5bn in goods in 2019. In the past five years, Qatar has imported over $23bn from the US, and over 850 US companies now operate in Qatar.