Posted on January 25, 2017

The US-Qatar Business Council (USQBC) on Wednesday hosted an exclusive roundtable discussion for its members with Qatar's Defense Attaché in Washington, DC, Staff Brigadier General Yousef Al-Kuwari and his colleagues.

Brigadier General Yousef Al-Kuwari provided insight into Qatar's defense strategy and outlook: “Our aim is to defend our country and expand our armed forces,” said Al-Kuwari.  “In an unstable region, we need to be able defend ourselves, by ourselves, but beyond our national goals we also have an international commitment to be a strong participant with our allies.” This goal has precipitated the expansion of the Defense Attaché’s office in the US, including enlarging its Washington, DC presence and a new West Coast office to be opened in Los Angeles in the coming months.

The discussion focused on Qatar’s current defense capabilities and assessed future opportunities for US cooperation, especially in the private sector. In particular, Qatar aims to increase its manpower and capabilities through knowledge transfer and training with the US and other allies. Al-Kuwari estimated that there are currently 600 Qatari students studying at US universities who may pursue a career in Qatar’s armed services. That number is expected to increase by 150-300 each year. Qatar will also be looking for US support in skills training for special forces and military pilots.

“We are deeply grateful to General Al-Kuwari and his talented team for such a rich discussion on our deepening defense ties in the public and private sectors. Events like this provide an invaluable opportunity for USQBC members and for Qatari officials seeking to engage with world-class American companies,” said USQBC President, Ambassador Patrick Theros.