In the framework of the distinguished partnership and strong relations between Doha and Ankara, the fourth meeting of Qatar-Turkey Supreme Strategic Committee will be held Monday in Istanbul, under the chairmanship of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
This session is particularly important because there are many goals that the two countries aspire to achieve in various sectors.
His Highness the Amir will discuss with the Turkish president ways to strengthen and develop the strategic partnership between the two countries in various fields, in addition to a number of regional and international issues of common concern.
The two leaders will also witness the signing of a number of co-operation agreements and memorandums of understanding in various fields.
Qatar-Turkey Supreme Strategic Committee was established in December 2014, after the Amir and the Turkish president signed an agreement, to act as an important mechanism for strengthening bilateral relations in all fields. Under the agreement, a large number of ministries, in addition to several governmental and private institutions from both sides, were involved in the preparation of bilateral co-operation agreements.
The committee's first meeting, hosted by Doha in December 2015, put the bilateral relations on an institutional path to guarantee maintaining the previous achievements, and extend its horizons to transcend excellence at the political level in order to achieve similar distinction in other areas, especially the economy, trade, investment, culture and security .
The meeting saw the signing of 16 agreements in various fields including security, banking, finance, education, journalism, information, environment, archiving, transport and energy. The committee has held three meetings so far, the first and the third were in Doha in 2015 and 2017, while the second meeting was held in Trabzon in northern Turkey. During these meetings, 40 agreements were signed in various fields.
In preparation for the fourth meeting of the committee, preliminary and preparatory meetings were held between senior officials of the two countries. Speaking to the Qatari Arabic daily Al Arab, the Turkish ambassador to Qatar Fikret Ozer, said that the meeting will witness the signing of at least 10 new co-operation agreements, bringing the total number of agreements, signed by the two sides, to 50.
The envoy said that the new agreements include a trade and economic partnership agreement, a defence industry agreement, a military training agreement, a health agreement and a cultural co-operation agreement, as well as an agreement to increase Qatar Airways' flights to Istanbul's new airport and a cargo agreement.
Turkish-Qatari relations are an integrated model of co-operation and co-ordination between partners in various political, economic, cultural and military fields, where economic relations have witnessed rapid growth since the start of the Gulf crisis. This is represented in the increase in the volume of trade exchange, as well as the diversity of joint projects, suggesting a prosperous future for these relations in the coming period, especially after talking about the establishment of a free trade zone between the two countries, and the increase of the number of shared capital companies to 100.
It is also important to note Qatar's strong support for Turkey during the failed coup attempt in the summer of 2016 and later the during the so-called economic coup, in confirmation of the strength of the relations between the two countries, and the cohesion of their two peoples in the face of the challenges and crises facing them. In this context, His Highness the Amir visited Turkey on August 15 at the height of the crisis that hit the Turkish lira. The Amir gave directions on providing a package of economic projects, investments and deposits amounting to about QR55bn ($15bn) to support the Turkish economy. The two countries have proved, on many occasions and by various means, that they are partners that exchange material and moral support and close co-ordination during hardships, relying on their distinguished historical relations, which have become an example to be followed, receiving their strength from the brotherly ties between the two sides. To Page 2
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The Qatari-Turkish relations are witnessing continuous development at all levels of co-operation. These relations have seen exchange of high-level visits between the leaders of the two countries and the ministers, on one hand and businessmen and the private sector on the other hand, as well as permanent and continuous co-ordination in regional and international forums on all issues of mutual interest.
Qatar and Turkey have strong economic ties based on trade. In recent years, these relations have witnessed a boom in various economic fields and activities. These relations have been culminated with several agreements in various fields. Turkish companies have significantly contributed to the ongoing boom in Qatar, especially in the areas of construction and infrastructure.
The Qatari and Turkish authorities are exerting tremendous efforts to maintain momentum in the strategic relations between the two countries. Their high-level visits have intensified since 2013. Qatar is among the most important investors in Turkey with investments of over $23bn. Moreover, the trading volume between the two countries is expected to exceed $2bn during this year.
The Qatari investments focus on various sectors, mainly Turkish banking, energy, manufacturing, tourism, real estate and agriculture, as well as the military industry, which is one of the most important facets of the modern Turkish economy.
The Qatari-Turkish relations are built on brotherhood, understanding and mutual respect. They are relying on a great legacy of common history and civilisation. In February 2018 the Qatari embassy in Ankara launched the "special Qatari-Turkish postal stamp" on the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries in 1973.