Qatar-Turkey Joint Strategic Panel Meeting…

HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani and Turkish President Recep Tayipp Erdogan chaired the first meeting of Qatari-Turkish Supreme Strategic Committee which was held at the Emiri Diwan yesterday.

HH the Deputy Emir Sheikh Abdullah bin Hamad al-Thani, HE the Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa al-Thani and several ministers also attended the meeting. On the Turkish side, the meeting was attended by members of the delegation accompanying the president.

The meeting reviewed the close relations of co-operation between Qatar and Turkey and means of developing and enhancing them in various fields. It also discussed a host of regional and international issues, particularly the Palestinian problem and the situation in Syria.

After the meeting, the Emir and the Turkish president witnessed the signing of a number of protocols, agreements and memoranda of understanding between the two countries.

A protocol on co-operation in the field of training and education between the interior ministries of the two countries and another on co-operation between the Internal Security Force (Lekhwiya) and the Turkish Gendarmerie General Command was signed along with a co-operation agreement in the field of public financial management development. A memorandum of understanding in the field of education, a memorandum of understanding in the field of environment, a maritime transport agreement, a memorandum of understanding on the mutual recognition of national certificate of those working at sea and a co-operation protocol in the field of archives between the two countries were also signed.

The two sides also signed a memorandum of understanding between Qatar Development Bank (QDB) and the Turkey Export Import Bank, a memorandum of understanding between QDB and the Development Bank of Turkey, and a memorandum of understanding between QDB and Turkish Bank Eksi in the field of exchanged businesses.

An agreement on medium and small-sized projects was also signed in addition to a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in natural gas sector between Qatar Petroleum (QP) and Turkish Potash, a  co-operation protocol in the field of press and information, a draft protocol of co-operation in the field of science and technology between Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF) and the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey.
Before the committee’s meeting, the Emir and the Turkish president met in the presence of HH the Deputy Emir Sheikh Abdullah bin Hamad al-Thani. During the meeting, they discussed bilateral relations. Earlier on arrival at the Emiri Diwan, President Erdogan was accorded in an official welcome.

Later the Emir hosted a luncheon banquet in honour of President Erdogan and the delegation accompanying him. HE the Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa al-Thani attended the banquet along with HE the Advisory Council Speaker Mohamed bin Mubarak al-Khulaifi and several Sheikhs, ministers and businessmen. President Erdogan left  Doha yesterday evening after a two-day official visit to Qatar.  He was seen off  on  departure  at  Hamad International Airport by HE the Minister of Culture, Arts and Heritage  Dr Hamad bin Abdul Aziz al-Kuwari, and ambassador of Turkey to Qatar Ahmet Demirok.

Strategic committee’s meeting reflects desire to upgrade bilateral ties
The first session of the Qatari-Turkish Supreme Strategic Committee which convened in Doha yesterday reflects the distinguished relations between the two countries and their desire to promote and upgrade them to the level of shared political will.

The Strategic committee’s meeting was presided over by HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

At the outset of the meeting, the two leaders of the session expressed through their speeches their satisfaction with the outstanding level reached in the bilateral relations in all fields and the continuous consultation and co-ordination between them.

In an atmosphere of friendliness and brotherhood the two sides discussed various regional and international issues of common interest and took note of the results of the preparatory committee meetings held on 09.05.2015 and 15.09.2015 and agreed as follows:

1st: in the field of politics and diplomacy:
♦ The two sides held comprehensive talks on the bilateral relations between the two countries, and stressed the importance of developing and activating them, in addition to the international and regional issues of common concern, and exchanged views on them in light of the international variables. The Committee expressed the importance of continuing consultation and co-ordination in this regard.
♦ The Committee also welcomed the results of the preparatory committee meeting at the ministerial level, which was held in the Turkish city of Antalya on 09/05/2015 , and chaired by the foreign ministers of Qatar and Turkey.
2nd: in the Field of security:
The Committee has welcomed the signing of:
♦ The Co-operation Protocol between the Internal Security Force (Lekhwiya), in the State of Qatar and the national gendarmerie force in Turkey.
♦ Co-operation Protocol in the field of training and education between the governments of  Qatar and  Turkey.
3rd: in the Field of Finance:
The Committee has welcomed the signing of:
♦ Co-operation agreement in the field of developing public finance management between the governments of Qatar and Turkey.
♦ The two sides stressed the need to continue the negotiations on Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion Agreement, while taking into account the developments in this matter.
4th:  in the Field of Education:
♦ The Committee welcomed the signing of a memorandum of understanding in the field of education between Qatar and Turkey.
♦ The Committee has also welcomed the study of the following projects:
♦ Co-operation agreement in the field of Education and Higher Education and Scientific Research.
♦ Memorandum for the establishment of the Qatari-Turkish joint university.
5th: in the Field of Universities:
♦ The two sides agreed to continue consultation on the co-operation protocol on the technology project between Qatar University and the Yunus Emre Institute.
6th: in the Field of Energy and Industry:
♦ The Committee has welcomed the signing of the co-operation agreement in the natural gas sector between Qatar Petroleum and Turkish Botas for supplying gas.
♦ The two sides stressed the need to discuss ways to develop trade and investment relations in the field of energy.
7th: in the area of banks:
The Committee has welcomed the signing of the following memorandums of understanding:
1.Memorandum of Understanding between Qatar Development Bank and the Bank of Export and Import of Turkey.
2.Memorandum of Understanding between Qatar Development Bank and the Industrial Development Bank of Turkey.
3.Memorandum of Understanding for co-operation in the field of mutual business between Qatar Development Bank and the Turk Eximbank.
♦ The Committee also welcomed the signing of the agreement on medium and small enterprises.
8th: in the field of transport and communications:
♦ The Committee has welcomed the signing of:
1.Maritime Transport Draft Agreement.
2.Memorandum of Understanding on mutual recognition of mariners’ certificates of eligibility between the governments of Qatar and Turkey.
9th: in the Field of Journalism and Media:
♦ The Committee has welcomed the signing of the co-operation protocol in the field of press and media between the governments of Qatar and Turkey.
10th: in the Field of Health:
♦ The two sides agreed to continue consultations with a view to complete the examination of the draft memorandum of understanding for co-operation in the field of health and medical science, and preparing it to be signed during the second session of the Committee.
11th: in the Field of Customs:
♦ The two sides stressed the intensification of efforts to reach out to consult on the draft version of co-operation and mutual assistance in customs matters between the governments of  Qatar and Turkey, to prepare it for signature during the second session of the Commission.
12th : in the field of culture:
♦ The Committee thanked the authorities concerned in the two countries for their efforts in holding the Qatari-Turkish cultural events in 2015, and urged the two sides to continue co-operation.
♦ The Committee recommended the pursuit of consultation on the draft memorandum of understanding for co-operation in the cultural field, to prepare it for signature during the second session of the Committee.
13th : in the field of youth and sports:
♦ The two sides expressed their desire to consolidate their co-operation in this area, through discussing the signing of:
1.Co-operation agreement in the field of youth and sports between the governments of Qatar and Turkey.
2.The first executive draft programme for the co-operation agreement in the field of youth and sports.
The Qatari side has promised to complete its study on each of the two drafts mentioned above.
14th : in the field of Archive:
♦ The Committee has welcomed the signing of the co-operation agreement in the field of archives between the governments of Qatar and Turkey.
15th  : in the field of law and the judiciary:
♦ The Committee has confirmed continuing consultations to complete the examination of the draft agreement on co-operation in the judicial field.
16th : in the field of environment and agriculture:
♦ The Committee has welcomed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding in the field of agriculture between the governments of Qatar and Turkey.
♦ The two sides urged the authorities concerned in the two countries to continue consultations in order to complete the examination of the draft Memorandum of Understanding between the governments of Qatar and Turkey on co-operation in the field of environment.
17th : in the field of municipalities and urban planning:
♦ The two sides confirmed their willingness to co-operate and co-ordinate in the field of Municipality and Urban Planning.
18th : in the field of tourism:
♦ The two sides called for the intensification of co-operation in this area, through:
♦ The exchange of visits between officials and those interested in the tourism sector, to get acquainted with the qualifications  abound in the two countries.
♦ The Turkish side has handed to his Qatari counterpart a draft memorandum of understanding for co-operation in the field of organising exhibitions between the governments of Qatar and Turkey.
19th : in the field of communications and information technology:
♦ The Committee has welcomed the draft co-operation protocol in the field of science and technology between the Qatar Foundation and the Council of Scientific and technological Research in Turkey.
♦ The two sides agreed to complete their study on the draft memorandum of understanding for co-operation in the field of communications and information technology between Qatar and Turkey.
20: In the area of investment:
♦ The two sides have reaffirmed the importance of investments in consolidating economic co-operation between the two countries, and recommended that the two parties complete their study on Afshin al-Bustan project.
21st: in the field of economy and trade:
♦ The two sides reviewed various areas of bilateral co-operation, and stressed the need to provide new mechanisms for cooperation in line with the positive developments in the cooperation between the two countries, and the current economic conditions.
♦ The Committee also recommended that the two sides complete their study on the draft trade and economic partnership agreement, and in this context, the two sides agreed to hold a new round of negotiations during 2016.
22nd: Follow-up Committee:
♦ The two sides agreed to continue the work of the follow-up committee to implement the recommendations and decisions of the Joint Committee, and submit a report about its work to the two countries.
♦ The two sides agreed to hold meetings of the second session of the Qatari – Turkish Supreme Committee in Turkey in 2016 on a date to be determined through diplomatic channels.