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DOHA: Qatari and Saudi Arabian businessmen who met in the Saudi city of Dammam last Wednesday to explore opportunities of joint business and investment in their two countries have vowed to remove the obstacles that hinder achieving their goal.
The meeting convened by a Joint Qatari-Saudi Businessmen’s Council expressed concern that despite the two countries being neighbours and having historical ties, bilateral trade totaled barely QR7.1bn in 2011.
In the previous year, that is, 2010, Saudi-Qatar trade volume was QR6.9bn that grew barely 3.3 percent the next year.
Given the large size of the two economies trade exchange between Saudi Arabia and Qatar can be much more, rued the Council.
There are currently 300 Saudi companies operating in Qatar and the Council hopes the number would grow and they would be able to grab a fair share in the slice of development taking place here, particularly in preparation for the coveted 2022 soccer event.
The Council’s ascent is on an increasing number of Saudi and Qatari companies entering partnerships to do business in both the countries, and especially to grab major contracts in the booming Qatari market.
The Council has decided to explore a number of business and investment opportunities in both the countries and present them before Qatari and Saudi businessmen so they could take advantage.
Present, among others, were Mohamed bin Towar Al Kuwari, vice-chairman of Qatar Chamber and deputy head of the Qatari-Saudi Council, and head of the Council from the Saudi side, Abdul Rahman Otaishan.
Addressing the Council meeting, Al Kuwari called for removing the hurdles that face Qatari and Saudi businessmen in doing business and making investments in each other’s countries.
Otiashan stressed that increased business ties between the two countries and cooperation between the private sectors would add to efforts to achieve regional economic independence.
“As businessmen it is our duty to help strengthen trade ties guided and backed by the leaderships of our two countries,” Otaishan was quoted as saying by Qatar News Agency (QNA).
The Council has decided to form sector-wise committees that would be tasked with encouraging Saudi and Qatari businessmen to set up joint ventures in realms like real estate logistic services, transport and capital management, to name a few.the peninsula