Past Events

Qatar – Belgium Business Forum

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Qatar Belgium Economic Forum
H.E. Sheikh Ahmed Bin Jassim Al Thani, Minister of Economy and Trade of the State of Qatar

On the Occasion of the visit of H.E. Sheikh Ahmed Bin Jassim Al Thani, Minister of Economy and Trade of the State of Qatar, with an Economic and Business Delegation of CEO, to the Kingdom of Belgium, the Embassy of the State of Qatar and the Arab-Belgian-Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce (ABLCC), in collaboration with the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and regional foreign trade agencies (AWEX, FIT, BIE), were delighted to organize a Business Forum on Wednesday, 25 May, 2016, from 9.00 am to 12.00 pm, at Hotel Steigenberger.

The event, which attracted over 150 people, was a roaring success and we were delighted to welcome such a great number of participants!

Behind this considerable success lies the fact that the State of Qatar is experiencing a development considered by experts as one of the fastest in the world. The country, which is working to diversify its economy away from the oil and gas sector, offers Belgian businesses ample opportunities to share their experience and know-how to its growing market.

We are very grateful to Your Excellency for coming to Belgium with high level officials, as well as businessmen. People to people contacts are crucial if you want to develop business relationship or even better a true partnership.
H.E.M. Peter de Crem

After a welcome address by Mr. Johan Beerlandt, Chairman of the ABLCC and CEO of BESIX, and H.E. Sheikh Ali Bin Jassim AL THANI, Ambassador of the State of Qatar to the Kingdom of Belgium, we had the pleasure to listen H.E. Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim Al Thani, Qatari Minister of Economy and Trade, H.E. Mr. Pieter de Crem, Belgian Secretary of State for Foreign trade, and H.E. Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani, Chairman of Qatari Businessmen Association.

In his introductory speech, H.E. Sheikh Ali Bin Jassim AL THANI pointed out that this business forum was a perfect follow up to the large economic delegation led by Princess Astrid of Belgium to Qatar last year.

Likewise, H.E.M. Pieter de Crem highlighted the fact that subsequently to the Belgian Princely Mission to the State of Qatar in March 2015, “our bilateral trade volume has substantially increased in 2015 to reach almost 1.5 billion EUR. The Belgian exports increased by 56% to reach 318 million EUR while the Qatari exports grew by 17% to reach 1.127 billion EUR. The economic mission has no doubt contributed to it.” "Our cooperation has already developed in all the sectors of the ambitious Qatar National Vision of 2030," he added.

Belgian companies are playing an important role in strengthening economic ties with Qatar, yet we have to exert more effort to expand and develop our economic, trade and investment cooperation.
H.E. Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim Al Thani

In his speech, H.E. Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim Al Thani pointed up that by now there are 61 Belgian companies operating in the State of Qatar. His Excellency also mentioned Qatar's National Economic Vision 2030 intended to guide economic, human and environmental development of the country and reduce dependence on oil and gas.

Qatar Belgium Economic Forum 2

The main subject of the Forum “A Smart Partnership: Expanding Cooperation in Key Areas” was addressed in three plenary sessions:

Session I: Public Investment for World Cup 2022 + other Major Projects: challenges and opportunities for Qatari-Belgian Cooperation

  • HE Mr. Nasser Ali Almawlawi, CEO, Public Works Authority
  • HE Mr. Abdullah Bin Abdelaziz Alsbii, CEO, Qatar Rail
  • Mr. Youssed Al Moslih, Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy

Session II: Investment funds and investment opportunities

  • Mr. Kamal Naji, CEO for Strategy & Business Development, Qatar Financial Centre
  • Mr. Ahmed Albouinin, Business Development Director, Katara Hospitality
  • Mr. Mohammad Al Malki, Manateq (Economic Zones Company
  • Mr. Fathi Abdelati, Qatar Airways
  • Sheikh Turki Bin Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani, President of the Belgian Business Club in Qatar

Session III: Challenges in the Energy Sector - business opportunities, joint investments and cooperation in research, development and innovation

  • Mr. Ali Abdallah Salat, Ministry of Energy & Industry
  • Mr. Abdennasser Al Ansari, Deputy Executive Director, Qatar National Research Fund
  • Mr. Ali Manie Al Ahbabi, Business Development Director, Nebras Power

The Forum was an efficient way to shedding light on the various investment opportunities offered by the fastest growing economy in the Gulf region. It also offered the participants the opportunity to establish multiple contacts outside the meeting room as well as during the business lunch hosted by the Arab-Belgian-Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce and the Embassy of the state of Qatar.

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