UK a trusted trade partner for the Arab World, says Qatar Chamber Chairman

Wednesday November 2nd, 2022

Qatar Chamber’s Chairman HE Sheikh Khalifa bin Jassim Al-Thani has led the Chamber’s delegation participating in the 2nd Arab-British Economic Summit (ABES2022), which took place on Wednesday 2nd November in London.

The delegation also included board members HE Sheikh Hamad bin Ahmed Al-Thani, Dr Khalid bin Klefeekh Al-Hajri and Abdulrahman bin Abdulla Al-Ansari, alongside a number of leading Qatari businessmen.

Organised by the Arab-British Chamber of Commerce (ABCC) under the banner of ‘Shaping a Shared Vision’, the summit highlighted several topics such as the strategic UK-Arab partnership, and how to reshape trade relations between both sides in light of technological change and climate change.

Speaking at the opening session, HE Sheikh Khalifa stressed the historic and close relations between the Arab World and the UK, which cover all fields and aspects, especially at the level of economy and mutual investments.

HE also said that the UK is a trusted and strong economic and commercial partner for the Arab countries, as there are many mutual investments in various sectors, expressing his hope that relations between both parties would witness further momentum during the period to come, especially in light of the common and firm desire towards upgrading such relations to higher levels.

QC Chairman affirmed the important role performed by the ABCC in promoting trade and investment between Arab countries and the UK, indicating that this summit comes within the framework of enhancing cooperation and partnership relations between both sides.

As for the UK-GCC relations, Sheikh Khalifa noted that there are close relations between both sides in various fields, especially in the economic and commercial aspects, indicating that the GCC is the UK’s seventh largest export market and that the UK-GCC trade exchange amounted to £ 33bn last year.

Sheikh Khalifa welcomed the negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between both parties which took place a few months ago, assuring that the signing of this agreement would increase their trade and maximize their mutual investments.

Regarding the Qatar-UK relations, HE said that both nations enjoy close and extensive relations that cover all fields, affirming that this is evidenced through the volume of mutual investments, trade exchange, and the number of agreements signed between them in various fields.

“In 2021, the two countries’ trade exchange amounted to £4 bn (QR 16.6bn), registering a 50 per cent growth compared with the previous year. Therefore, the UK is one of Qatar’s most important trade partners,” he added.

HE pointed to the FIFA World Cup 2022, adding: “ On this occasion, we would like to assure you that we are looking forward to seeing you all in Qatar during this global event, which is held for the first time in an Arab country and in the Middle East region in the history of the tournament.”

The Summit touched on practical initiatives that can strengthen transnational trade ties and bilateral investment flows in the post-pandemic, post-Brexit low-carbon economy.

Discussion also concentrated on healthcare, education, financial services, hospitality, real estate, transport, and other key sectors.

The event brought together government officials, senior executives, thought leaders and decision-makers from across the UK and the Arab world to share their ideas and debate the diverse trade and investment opportunities that are emerging in the new emerging technology-based industries

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