German ambassador Dr Claudius Fischbach stressed that the bilateral relations between Qatar and Germany have always been cordial, trustful and multi-faceted, backed by the close co-operation that have become even more substantial in the recent past, as Qatar has stepped up its international political role by expanding its diverse mediation efforts in the region and beyond. In exclusive statements to Qatar News Agency (QNA), he described the visit of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani to Germany as important and comes at a crucial time, when both countries, having just overcome the worst of the Covid pandemic, are now facing the consequences of Russia's war on Ukraine.
On this occasion, he emphasised that Qatar has been a reliable partner in raising its voice in favour of a peaceful solution through consultations and insisting on the sovereignty and independence of Ukraine. The German ambassador said that the Amir's visit to his country builds on his prior successful visits to Germany, especially the latest one in Sept 2018.
He expressed his optimism that the energy partnership between Germany and Qatar will be deepened, arranging for considerable flows of natural gas (LNG) to Germany in the future and providing German inputs in the development of renewable energies and in optimising energy efficiency here in Qatar. He pointed out that the German side would also like to jointly do much more on hydrogen gas as a key sustainable energy source.
Ambassador Fischbach also said that the Amir's visit to Germany will be an opportunity to hold discussions related to all political crises in the region and beyond; the Russian-Ukrainian war, the Iranian-US dialogue, the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and many others will play their role in the bilateral meetings. He expressed his country's gratitude for the support extended by Qatar through the safe passage flights from Kabul to Doha for German citizens and for Afghan people after the Taliban took over Kabul in Aug 2021.
He stated that reciprocal investments will be another major topic of the visit, adding that his country will be looking forward to further Qatari investments in Germany. Qatar so far invested about 25bn euros in Germany, while bilateral trade stood at about 1.3bn euros in 2021, and there is scope for more in the future, the ambassador said. The political co-ordination between Germany and Qatar has been close, especially in recent months, as the German foreign minister visited Doha in Sept 21, while HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani paid his latest visit to Berlin in early March.
He explained that consultations on all regional issues have been especially dense on vice-ministerial level, adding that the German Vice-Chancellor Robert Habeck was in Doha in March, laying the groundwork for the aforementioned energy partnership. The Qatari and German labour ministries have been working together on pertinent issues in the past months.
Ambassador Fischbach welcomed in this context, the leading role that Qatar has assumed on migrant workers' rights in the region, saying we "are closely following the consistent implementation of relevant laws." Regarding Qatar's preparations to host the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, the envoy said that "as far as we can see, preparations for the World Cup are fairly well advanced in Qatar. All the stadiums are practically ready."
He said that "as all the hosts of FIFA World Cups have learned, the success of the event depends not only on perfect organisation, but even more on the spirit, on the vibe, on tolerance, on the wonderful experience that fans are allowed to share."
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