Doha – 3 economic goals that Qatar will focus on in the coming period, according to what Ali bin Ahmed al-Kuwari, Minister of Commerce and Industry and Acting Minister of Finance in Qatar, has stated, which are “attracting foreign direct investment, supporting the private sector, and improving the business climate.”
Al-Kuwari, during his participation in the Qatar Economic Forum held via video conference, expressed his awareness of the transformations that are taking place globally, saying, “We know that oil will face major challenges in the coming years, so we focus more on clean energies and investing in them.” Read also Qatar Forum: The recovery of the global economy depends on international cooperation and the provision of Corona vaccines Qatar Economic Forum discusses the reality of digital currencies in the world and its future Erdogan: The “virus of racism” is more dangerous than Corona, and the media and human rights organizations ignore attacks on Muslims Qatar Economic Forum 2021: Technology (NFT) is an emerging field in the art market that generates huge revenues
He said that Qatar enacts many important laws to attract foreign investments and support the private sector to be freed from the dependence of the government sector, and to improve the business climate, stressing that his country has succeeded in attracting many investments.
Al-Kuwari added that the country’s institutions adhere to strict standards of governance and transparency, providing an image of Qatar’s economic landscape and the positive expectations expected to be achieved in the coming years.
The Qatari minister described his country’s financial situation as “excellent and strong,” and this “is due to the budget being based on expectations that the price of a barrel of oil will reach $40, with estimates of an annual deficit of 34 billion Qatari riyals.”
But the good news – as he said – “was not achieved after oil prices recorded a rise of $46 a barrel during the first quarter of the year, which enabled a budget surplus of 0.2 billion Qatari riyals to be achieved, also thanks to the control of expenditures and the development of income.”
Al-Kuwari said optimistically that if these conditions continue, the Qatari economy “will be in a good and strong position in terms of budget numbers.”
Al-Kuwari reviewed the pillars of his country’s policy in dealing with indebtedness, indicating that Qatar does not need to return to the debt market soon unless it wants to take advantage of low interest rates that will enable it to mitigate and finance high-cost debts.
The minister expected that his country’s economic situation in the coming years would lead to a rise in the gross domestic product, which would enable it to invest more and strengthen its financial and economic position.
At the same time, he pointed out that Qatar has not yet decided to implement the value-added tax because it “takes into consideration not to increase the burden on the consumer during the period of the Corona epidemic,” saying that this tax will be announced at the appropriate time.
Fixes and changes
Minister Al-Kuwari spoke about his country’s policy to improve the business climate, pointing to the policies that Qatar is committed to with regard to investment markets, labor protection and trade competitiveness within the framework of its 2030 economic vision.
He stressed Qatar’s interest in economic pluralism and improving the investment climate to attract more companies in various fields, and launch important projects such as the media center, free zone and others.
He said the country was moving forward with reforms and changes “that take into account the interests of workers as well as businesses and be more flexible.”
Hope after suffering
In turn, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed his satisfaction with the high growth rate of his country’s economy this year, “after a year of suffering due to the epidemic, which led to a decline in the global economy by 3.5% and global trade by 10%,” he said, adding that global debt reached to $282 trillion.
Despite the losses, the Turkish president expressed his confidence “that economic recovery is possible,” expecting his country’s economy to achieve a growth rate of 5.7% this year, and 3.4% next year, and said that it is “the best numbers in the OECD countries.”
Despite the Corona epidemic, Erdogan stressed that his country has maintained global supply chains smoothly, and Turkish exports have reached a record number of $200 billion, and he believed that the solution to overcoming the Corona crisis “is global effort and cooperation.”
At the same time, he warned of what he called the “virus of racism” more dangerous than Corona, especially with the significant rise in hate speech against Muslims in many Western countries, and the increase in attacks on mosques, and said that “this is a phenomenon that must be confronted with all seriousness because of its devastating and dangerous effects.”
revival of world trade
In the axis of “energy flow and trade”, Director of the World Trade Organization, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, said that Corona constituted a watershed stage to re-talk about the role of the organization, as the epidemic broke the rising line of globalization and the demand for it and the openness of many countries to the idea of the spread of liberalism in the world during the past years, indicating that “All of this has recently slowed down due to the Corona epidemic.”
The official in charge of the international organization stressed the need to reintegrate other parties around the world in what she called the system of globalization and its benefits, and to revive the international trade process again.
Negotiations not confrontation
On the other hand, Lord Peter Mandelson, head of the Global Council Strategic Consulting Center, touched on Britain’s experience in global trade historically, and said, “Now after leaving the European Union, Britain is back in concluding free trade agreements with dozens of countries.”
The strategic expert – who previously served as Minister of Commerce in the British government – pointed to the idea of restoring “Great Britain” in the face of rising powers, especially China and Russia.
He considered that the best solution for the British and Europeans was to “rebalance their relations with China, and arrange the relationship with it instead of confronting it.”
The British spokesman added that if his country’s partnership with China succeeds, it will achieve better results than the United States aspires to obtain through confrontation and sanctions.
According to Mandelson, the countries of the world have learned a lot regarding the experience of global supplies during the Corona period, but he said that “we should not mortgage our economy to a particular source or destination, but rather we must distribute production sources so that we avoid any similar crisis in the future,” referring to China’s failure to convert to the factory of the world.