Minister of Economy and Trade HE Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim bin Mohammed al Thani highlighted the strengthening economic relations between Qatar and Germany at the fourth meeting of the Qatari-German joint committee for trade and economic cooperation in Berlin on Thursday, said Qatar Tribune.
The minister referred to the economic and investment agreements between the two countries while speaking at the meet. He said the volume of trade between Qatar and Germany reached 2 billion euros in 2013, registering an increase of 12.5 percent from 2012. He said that this rise reflected the continued growth in the volume of trade and investment between the two countries. German investment in Qatar has grown in the recent past as the number of German-owned companies in Qatar has reached 27, the minister said adding that the number of Qatari-German joint venture companies in Qatar has also rises to 112 recently.
The Qatari investments in Germany cover a number of areas like operations and investment portfolio, real estate and hotels, the minister said. The minister said the Qatari-German Economic Forum held last September on the sidelines of the visit of the Emir His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani to Germany demonstrated the strength of the relations between the two countries where the participation of the businessmen and executives of major companies and institutions had enriched the joint debate in economic, trade and investment sectors.
Sheikh Ahmed said Qatar's economy is open and its laws are flexible and evolving to keep pace with the best international standards. He noted that there are economic sectors in Qatar where foreign companies can have 100 percent ownership. In other sectors foreign companies can have 49 percent ownership depending on the type of activity and area of investment chosen by the investor. Qatar encourages and welcomes investment and investors from around the world as partners in sustainable development, the minister said.
The Qatari-Germany joint committee meeting was attended by senior officials of ministries and government institutions in the two countries. The two sides agreed to take necessary steps to develop economic relations and increase bilateral trade, including the facilitation of the flow of goods, services and investment between the two countries. The two sides also confirmed their desire to intensify and increase bilateral cooperation in economics, trade, energy, industry and infrastructure, transportation, aviation, education, health, sports, culture, information technology and agriculture sectors.
At the end of the meeting, the minister witnessed the signing of the acquisition of a German company 'Kunst-Stoff Kunst' by a Qatari company. The German company specialises in design and development of software applications and electronic games. The minister also visited the German parliament and met a number of officials where he was briefed on the parliamentary system in Germany.