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Italy an attractive investment destination for Qatar: Kuwari

Italy an attractive investment destination for Qatar: Kuwari

Tribune News Network
Doha
Rapidly developing bilateral relations, trade and energy ties make Italy an attractive investment destination for Qatar, Minister of Commerce and Industry HE Ali bin Ahmed al Kuwari has said.
Addressing the Italian-Arab Business Forum held recently in Milan, the minister said
Qatari-Italian bilateral trade increased by around 14 percent to reach $3 billion in 2018.
Qatari-Italian bilateral trade accounts for 2.65 percent of Qatar’s total foreign trade, ranking Italy as Qatar’s eighth largest trade partner, he said.
Kuwari pointed out that the relations between the Arab countries and Italy rested on a long history of political, geographic and cultural ties, which contributed to strengthening cooperation and integration in various fields, particularly in trade.
Trade between Italy and Arab countries rose to $62 billion in 2018 compared with $59 billion in 2017, he said, noting that Italian exports to Arab states amounted to about $29 billion, while imports were estimated at $ 32 billion.
The minister emphasised that Qatar and Italy enjoyed close and friendly relations that have gained momentum following the historic visits of the Amir HH Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani to Italy. The visits have reflected positively on the level of bilateral cooperation, particularly in the trade sector, he added.
Fifty fully owned Italian companies and 200 Qatari-Italian joint companies are currently operating in Qatar, he said noting that Italian companies play an important role in supporting Qatar’s development plans and projects.
Most Italian companies operate in various fields of the construction market and the production of raw material and machinery as well as IT sector, trade, services sectors among other vital industries, he said.
“Italian companies attach a great deal of importance to the field of renewable energy, which is of interest to Qatar in all its development projects, particularly those relating to the 2022 FIFA World Cup projects.”
Italy, he said, represents an attractive destination for Qatari investments in various sectors and economic activities, as Qatar seeks to channel some of its resources into promising investment opportunities in the economies of its partners
The agreements and memoranda of understanding that Qatar and Italy have ratified also play an important role in strengthening and consolidating bilateral relations in various fields, he said.
These include an agreement on promoting economic and technical cooperation and an agreement on the Mutual Promotion and Protection of Investments, which have encouraged the private sector in the two countries to establish many successful investment projects, the minister said.
He explained that Qatar has adopted a clear vision to achieve by 2030 in terms of diversifying its revenue sources and providing support for various economic sectors, particularly the private sector, through the implementation of various programs and policies aimed at increasing the contribution of the private sector to the comprehensive development of Qatar.
Along these lines, Qatar has developed business legislations and regulations to streamline business and economic activities and ensure an attractive environment for foreign direct investments, the minister said.
These include the launch of the Single Window initiative to streamline approvals and licensing procedures for the establishment of businesses in Qatar in addition to issuing new laws regulating investments to allow non-Qatari investors up to 100 percent ownership in all economic, commercial and real estate activities, he added.
The minister pointed out that Qatar had also established an advanced network of free zones, and logistics and industrial areas to meet all investors’ need.
These efforts have reflectively positively on Qatar’s macroeconomic environment ranking Qatar first among countries that achieved economic growth over the past 20 years with a compounded average growth rate of 10.5 percent.

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