Malaysia eyes Qatar as hub for African markets
April 28 2019 09:10 PM
Mansor Shah Wahid, Matrade’s director for Central, West, South Asia & Africa Section, is leading an
Mansor Shah Wahid, Matrade’s director for Central, West, South Asia & Africa Section, is leading an export acceleration mission to Qatar until May 2. PICTURE: Shaji Kayamkulam

Malaysia is exploring the possibility of making Qatar as its gateway to major markets in Africa, while at the same time, to be the Gulf state’s hub for the Southeast Asian region, an official of the Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (Matrade) has said.
“We do rely on partners to understand the local requirements and the market around the region. Qatar is in a position to penetrate markets in the African region, and vies to become a major trading hub. Likewise, we would like a reciprocal relationship and for Qatari companies to use Malaysia as a gateway to the Asean region,” said Mansor Shah Wahid, Matrade’s director for Central, West, South Asia & Africa Section.
Wahid is leading an export acceleration mission on building material, medical devices and facility management to Qatar until May 2. He said Matrade will focus on new Malaysian technology in building material and medical devices, as well as to promote expertise in facility management. 
While in Qatar, Wahid said, the Malaysian delegation will participate in a series of exclusive sessions to network and collaborate with the Qatari business community to promote Malaysian products and services.
According to Wahid, the Malaysian delegation is composed of 14 representatives offering their expertise in facility management, latex medical glove, cleaning and sanitising products, stethoscope, wood, plastic composite wall tiles, fibre mastic advanced asphalt, advanced insulation material, interior design, and building information modeling.
“The companies are expected to highlight their value proposition on offering their latest products and services, and at the same time comply with the latest trend and market demands in the Qatar,” Wahid explained.
Wahid said the visit is Matrade’s second business delegation programme to Qatar this year. 
“We are bringing expertise in construction, medical devices, and pharmaceutical companies to collaborate with business community here. The ongoing implementation of major development projects across various sectors, such as building, hospitality, and infrastructure, made us eager to be part of Qatar National Vision 2030 and to contribute to the Qatar National Development Strategy (NDS), which aims at creating conducive conditions for more private-public participation. 
“Malaysia has established its footprint in Qatar more than a decade ago where our companies were involved heavily in construction, retail, and the hospitality industry…we want to invite the Qatari business community to Malaysia to explore potential collaboration with Malaysian companies for machine tools, oil and gas, and the healthcare industry,” he continued. 
Asked about the role Malaysia could play in Qatar’s efforts to attain self-sufficiency, Wahid said: “For the construction sector, we are more than happy to share the technology that we have developed, as well as skills and preferred practices. 
“For pharmaceuticals, we have developed our skills sets by complying with international standards, especially for medical devices and disposables. We can bring these technologies, as well as the raw materials and the value added can be done in Qatar.” 
Wahid noted that Qatari companies can register their interest to source from Malaysia through Matrade’s International Sourcing Programme (INSP) where pre-arranged meetings will be the main focus. 
He said the nearest INSP will be organised in conjunction with ‘Metaltech Malaysia’ on May 15, ‘Oil & Gas Asia’ on June 18, and ‘APHM International Healthcare Exhibition’ on July 31, which will be held in Kuala Lumpur. 
“Matrade, through its office in Doha and with the support of Embassy of Malaysia, will continue to bridge the gap between the Malaysian and Qatari business community to enhanced bilateral relation between both countries,” Wahid said.

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