Azerbaijan, Qatar discuss cooperation prospects

Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov has today met with his Qatari counterpart Sheikh Mohammad bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani.

The sides discussed the current level of bilateral relations, issues on the agenda and prospects of the development of cooperation in various fields between Azerbaijan and Qatar. The ministers stressed the importance of continuation of joint efforts as well as expansion of legal-treaty base to further strengthen relations between the two countries.

The sides mentioned that the official visit of President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev to the State of Qatar in November, 2014 ushered in a qualitatively new stage in the history of the bilateral relations. At the same time, the FMs noted the official visit of Emir of the State of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani in March, 2016, which made a substantial contribution to the promotion of bilateral relations.

They noted with satisfaction that traditional friendly relations exist based on mutual understanding and dialogue between Azerbaijan and Qatar and fruitful cooperation continues in the framework of UN, OIC, Non-Alignment Movement and other international organizations.

Talking about the large-scale transportation and energy projects being implemented with the participation of Azerbaijan, including North-South, Baku-Tbilisi-Kars, TANAP and TAP projects, Elmar Mammadyarov said that these projects would be beneficial for the Gulf countries as well. He also proposed to review the opportunities of implementation of joint projects and investment in the third countries.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani positively reacting to this suggestion, also added that Qatar remains interested in the development of cooperation in agriculture and tourism sectors.

The ministers expressed their assurance that the launch of the joint intergovernmental commission between Azerbaijan and Qatar will contribute to the development of economic and trade relations. FM Mammadyarov said that all conditions are provided for the investment of Qatar and there are favourable opportunities for the implementation of joint projects and cooperation in the fields of pharmaceutical, oil-gas, chemical industry, processing of agricultural products and creation of agro centers, information technologies, textile, and production of construction materials, tourism and many others.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Qatar stressed the importance of increasing the number of direct flights between the two countries, and said that this fact will have a positive impact on the number of Qatar tourists visiting Azerbaijan.

Minister Elmar Mammadyarov highly appreciated the support of Qatar to the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Azerbaijan in the framework of its internationally recognized borders and the just position of Azerbaijan based on the international law in the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Also referring to the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council he emphasized the importance of implementation of the demands of these documents.

Noting that the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan signed a Decree on declaring the year of 2017 the “Year of Islamic Solidarity” in Azerbaijan, Minister Mammadyarov stressed that this year Azerbaijan is going to host the “Islamic Solidarity Games” and hopes for the active participation of Qatar athletes in these games.

The sides also noted the importance of strengthening the cultural relations, increasing the people-to-people contacts between the two countries, and discussed other issues of mutual concern.