The Minister of Energy and Industry H E Dr Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada (forth right), Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe (fifth right), Qatargas Operating Company Ltd CEO Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa Al Thani, (third right) and other officials and delegates during the Qatar-Japan Business Forum at Sheraton Doha Hotel yesterday. (Kammutty VP)
Doha: The Minister of Energy and Industry H E Dr Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada, has said that the volume of trade exchange between Qatar and Japan has reached more than $37bn in 2012.
Al Sada said in his address at the opening of the Qatar–Japan Business Forum in Doha yesterday that Japan is Qatar’s largest trading partner with a total volume of more than $37bn in 2012. Qatar is Japan’s second largest LNG supplier... and is also Japan’s third largest supplier of crude oil, he added.
The Minister said in his remarks before the forum held at Al Majlis Conference Hall at Sheraton Doha, that the forum was a very important building block in a rich history of trade and business relations between the two countries.
“It comes at a time when both the State of Qatar and Japan continue to enhance four decades of friendship, and strengthen their trade, economic, and political ties.
“When we look at Japan, we see a success story of sustained excellence moulded harmoniously by a history of culture and a heritage of dedication.
“It is with this reputation that Japan was able to become a symbol of economic development for the world. It is also with this reputation that — we in the State of Qatar- have sought a wider and stronger relationship with your esteemed country.”
Since 1972, Qatar’s relations with Japan have grown several folds in coverage and scale, covering a wide spectrum of political, economic, educational, cultural and scientific and technological cooperation, he said.
“Energy occupies a very special place in the matrix of our bilateral relationship. Japanese companies are active players in Qatar’s energy sector. Their partnerships with us include LNG and refinery ventures, power plants, exploration, development and production sharing agreements, as well as engineering and construction.
“I can comfortably say that our collaboration in the field of natural gas is the jewel in the crown of our energy partnership. Our first liquefied natural gas shipment arrived at the shores of Japan in 1997, marking a new era in our relations. In the wake of the unfortunate Tsunami disaster, Qatar stood by its friend Japan, and allocated priority shipments of about 4 million tonnes of additional LNG cargoes to help meet its urgent needs,” he said.
He added, “I would like to reiterate our commitment to Japan’s energy security through a reliable LNG supply. This commitment will not just help Japan meet the challenges of a changing energy market, but will also reinforce the strong foundations of our bilateral relationship.
“Undoubtedly, our relations have flourished with the help of the staunch support of leaderships of both our countries. His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, The Emir of the State of Qatar, and His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani the Father Emir, have played an important and inspirational role in cementing and developing the ties between our two nations.
“We value the important role played by Japanese energy companies by utilising their knowledge, expertise, and technology to contribute to the expansion of Qatar’s Hydrocarbon Industry,” he added.