Qatar is “very keen” on strengthening its cooperation with Indonesia in all fields, said Qatar Chamber Chairman Sheikh Khalifa bin Jassim al Thani.
He was addressing Wednesday’s Qatar-Indonesia Business Forum, which comes within the framework of the visit of the Emir HH Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani to Indonesia.
Indonesia is of great significance to Qatar in South-East Asia, he said. Qatar-Indonesia bilateral trade volume reached QR1.8 billion last year. There are lots of Indonesian labourers working in Qatar and contributing to the economic boom taking place in that country, Sheikh Khalifa said.
“Indonesia is one of Qatar’s desired destinations for investments. There are various Qatari investments in Indonesia in communication and banking sectors.”
In the communication sector, Ooredoo owns 55 percent of Indosat Co, while a branch of Qatar National Bank has become operational in Indonesia.
Besides, there are nine Qatari-Indonesian joint ventures and two companies of 100 percent Indonesian capital operating in the Qatari market.
Sheikh Khalifa said Qatar has successfully managed to mitigate the impacts of the unjust siege imposed by a Saudi-led bloc since June 5.
“Backed by the private sector, Qatar dealt with these measures very quickly and directly shifted to alternative sources to ensure the continuous flow of goods without any interruption,” he said.
New direct marine routes have been launched to connect Hamad Port with several ports in Oman, Turkey, Pakistan, China and India.
“Now, Qatar is receiving all imported commodities directly from its trade partners, circumventing the siege countries, which used to be the transits for 80 percent of the Qatari imports.
Sheikh Khalifa reiterated that the siege has had no effect on Qatar’s ongoing mega projects.
“Construction works for hosting the FIFA World Cup 2022 and infrastructure projects are progressing normally as scheduled.”
Highlighting Qatar’s resolve, he said, the design of the Al Thumama Stadium ” one of the host venues of the football tournament ” was unveiled during the siege days. “Designs of two more stadiums are scheduled to be unveiled by the end of the year,” he added.
The Public Works Authority, Ashgal, has finished 95 percent of its plans for road development this year, he said, adding that there was much scope for Indonesian companies to take part in Qatar’s development.
“Undoubtedly, Qatar now has become a very ideal destination for investment, thanks to the strategic policies adopted by the wise leadership and its pro-investment climate and legislation, along with the social and political stability and its distinctive geographical position.”
Indonesia Chamber of Commerce vice president Erwin Aksa said the forum “propels Qatari-Indonesian ties forward.” He also praised the development and growth of trade relations between Qatar and Indonesia, and invited companies and businessmen from both countries to take advantage of the investment opportunities that were highlighted during the forum.
He also stressed the importance of joint efforts by the business sector in both countries to explore cooperation opportunities and exchange expertise and hold trade visits and fairs to capitalise on the agreements and memoranda of understanding signed in various economic fields.
The forum also included bilateral meetings between businessmen from both countries where they discussed investment opportunities and measures to bolster long-term economic cooperation and enable Qatari companies to draw lessons from their Indonesian counterparts’ success.
On the sidelines of the Qatar-Indonesia Economic Forum, Qatar Chamber chairman Sheikh Khalifa bin Jassim al-Thani and Indonesian Chamber of Commerce vice-president Erwin Aksa signed memorandum of understanding.
It aims at enhancing trade and investment between the business communities of both countries through the facilitation of direct exchange of information, business delegations, and the promotion of business opportunities.
HE the Minister of Economy and Commerce Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim bin Mohamed al-Thani and Indonesia’s Minister of Trade Enggartiasto Lukita were present in the signing ceremony.