Qatar is making $3 billion dollars worth of new investments in Pakistan, in the form of deposits and direct investments, said Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan on Monday.
The economic partnership between Qatar and Pakistan will reach $9 billion, Qatar News Agency quoted foreign minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani as saying.
"The Qatari-Pakistani economic partnership will amount to $9 billion. Qatar affirms its aspiration for further development in the relations between the two countries at all political, economic, sports and cultural levels," said the foreign minister.
The announcement comes a day after Qatar Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani wrapped up his visit to Pakistan during which he held a one-on-one meeting with Prime Minister Imran Khan. Delegation-level talks were also held between the two sides.
The prime minister’s adviser on finance, Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, thanked the Emir for "announcing $3 billion in deposits and direct investments for Pakistan and for Qatar’s affirmation to further develop relations between the two countries."
Dr Awan, while talking to the media, thanked the Qatar Emir and his cabinet for the announcement, said Radio Pakistan.
She said that this amount will help Pakistan overcome its economic challenges, adding that Prime Minister Imran's announcement to grant visa on arrival for Qatari citizens will develop tourism sector in Pakistan.
She also hailed Qatar lifting the ban on Pakistani rice, saying it was good news for rice exporters and the economy of the country, Radio Pakistan reported.
On Saturday, following the Emir's arrival, Pakistan and Qatar signed three memoranda of understanding (MoUs) on trade and investment and cooperation on financial intelligence and tourism.
The signing of the MoUs was witnessed by Prime Minister Imran and Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim.
The MoUs related to the establishment of the Pakistan and Qatar Joint Working Group on Trade and Investment, cooperation in the field of tourism and business events and cooperation in the exchange of financial intelligence related to money laundering — associated offences and terrorism financing. The last MoU was signed between Qatar’s Financial Information Unit and Pakistan’s Financial Monitoring Unit.
Vow to work for regional peace
On Sunday, President Dr Arif Alvi and Emir Sheikh Tamim held wide-ranging talks, particularly the Afghan issue.
Alvi lauded Qatar’s role in promoting efforts for peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan, which was a notable contribution to regional peace.
While thanking the government and leadership of Pakistan for the gracious invitation and hospitality extended to him and his entourage during his two-day visit, the Qatari emir acknowledged the sacrifices made by Pakistan in the fight against terrorism.
Taking note of the progress achieved in Afghan peace talks, the two leaders agreed to continue working closely for regional peace and stability.
President Alvi conferred Nishan-i-Pakistan upon Sheikh Tamim at a special investiture ceremony.