Japan remains the largest importer of Qatari products, importing about 21% of Qatar’s total exports based on the embassy’s December 2019 records, Japanese ambassador Kazuo Sunaga has said.
“Without oil, gas and other products from Qatar, Japan could not maintain the current level of economy and even the current level of our life,” the envoy said, as he highlighted the strong bilateral relations between the two countries at the recently held Japan National Day and Japanese Emperor’s birthday celebrations in Doha.
The event was attended by HE the Minister of Transport and Communications Jassim Seif Ahmed al-Sulaiti, HE the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Education and Higher Education Dr Ibrahim bin Saleh al-Nuaimi, director of Protocol at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs ambassador Ibrahim Yousif Fakhro, Diplomatic Corps dean ambassador Ali Ibrahim Ahmad, and other diplomats and guests.
Sunaga stressed that Qatar and Japan are indispensable trade partners, noting that many Japanese companies have been contributing to the development of Qatar.
“The recent examples of this are the inauguration of Doha Metro and the signing of the agreement for the Al Kharsaah mega solar power plant, just to name a few. Last year, both countries’ leaderships have agreed to advance our relations to a higher level of strategic partnership. Japan is willing to play an active role in the realisation of Qatar National Vision 2030,” he said.
As Qatar and Japan will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties next year, Sunada expressed confidence that such excellent bilateral relations would expand further to incorporate new fields of co-operation.
“Of course, the economy continues to be the driving force of our relations. But I, as ambassador of Japan, will work together with the government and people of Qatar to expand our bilateral ties in a wide range of areas, such as security, science and technology, culture, education and sports,” he noted.
While reiterating the steadily developing bilateral relations between Qatar and Japan, Sunaga referred to the two visits of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani to Japan last year: an official visit in January and another visit in October to participate in the Enthronement ceremony of Emperor Naruhito.
“The government and people of Japan were really honoured and are grateful to His Highness,” the envoy said.
Sunaga noted that 2020 serves as a special year for Japan, which will host the Olympics and Paralympic Games in the summer.
“Such major sports events have a wonderful unifying power, the power to bring people around the world together, despite the differences in culture, ethnicity or whatsoever. I hope that this spirit will be carried on by the 2022 FIFA World Cup, which will be hosted in Qatar,” he said. “Japan is willing to share experiences in the Olympics and Paralympic Games with the government and people of Qatar.”