Qatar has showed its interest in concession of Olvia and Kherson seaports, Ukraine’s Infrastructure Ministry has reported on its website. The ministry said that the Ukrainian Sea Port Authority has signed a memorandum of understanding with Qatar ports management company Mwani Qatar, envisaging cooperation aimed at boosting cargo flow between seaports of Ukraine and Qatar, in particular, exports of agricultural products made in Ukraine to Qatar. In addition, it is planned to attract Qatar investments in port infrastructure facilities to include marine terminals in international supply chains.
“The signing of the memorandum opens the way for the further implementation of many projects… First of all, we are talking about the concession of the ports Olvia and Kherson. Qatar is also interested in cooperation in the Yuzhny port, which, according to the strategy of the Ukrainian Sea Port Authority, will start servicing large vessels that can pass the Bosporus Strait in the coming years,” Head of the Authority Raivis Veckagans said.
In turn, Minister of Transport and Communications of the State of Qatar Jassim Saif Ahmed Al Suleithi said that the development of cooperation with Ukraine in the port and aviation spheres is promising for Qatar and confirmed the intention to develop the launch of direct flights between Doha and Lviv at the bilateral level.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has said that the diversification of sources of gas supplies to Ukraine is a matter of national security. “Therefore, we are currently holding talks with Qatar’s leadership on supplies of Qatari liquefied natural gas. I want to congratulate you and say that Qatar can become an exporter of gas to our country, Ukraine. The gas can be supplied through the already operating regasification terminal in Poland. Ukraine can really get Qatari gas,” Poroshenko said in an interview with Qatari broadcaster Al Jazeera.
At the same time, according to the Ukrainian president, this is only the first step. “We agreed with our Qatari partners to invite our friends from Turkey to cooperation. We received their assurances of the possibility of implementing a project for the supply of Qatari natural gas directly through Turkey, and not only through Poland. We will be very happy to open our doors to Qatari companies so that they come to the Ukrainian energy market, it would be very important. I believe that the implementation of such a project would contribute to strengthening the energy security of my country,” Poroshenko said.
He also said that Ukraine annually exports $8 billion worth of goods to the Arab states, so cooperation with them occupies an important place in Ukraine’s economic strategy and foreign policy.
“Therefore, Ukraine seeks to acquire observer status in the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. We enjoy the full support of our friendly Arab countries in order to obtain observer status in this organization. We expect and hope that we will eventually get such membership,” Poroshenko said.
Public joint-stock company State Food-Grain Corporation plans to start exports of grain crops and finished products to Qatar. The press service of the corporation reported that the agreement was reached between the top managers of the corporation and one of the largest agricultural companies in Qatar Hassad Food during negotiations at the Qatar International Agricultural Exhibition 2018 in Doha.
“After the negotiations between the State Food-Grain Corporation and the top managers of Hassad Food, a preliminary agreement was reached on the export of Ukrainian mixed fodders to Qatar, according to the individual recipes of the customer. In May, a representative of Qatar Hassad Food is expected to visit Ukraine for more detailed discussion of the terms of export supplies and creation of commercial offers,” the corporation said.
In addition, the government of Qatar expressed interest in the import of Ukrainian grains, in particular barley and corn. “To this end, the next step in the implementation of the main strategic goal of the state corporation is the export of grain, which will be the start of the accreditation procedure for participation in a public tender for the supply of grain crops to Qatar,” the press service said.
President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko has said that during his official visit to Qatar intensive negotiations have taken place resulting in a number of extremely important agreements.
“I am confident that it is a powerful impetus that significantly intensifies Ukraine’s cooperation with the Gulf countries, particularly Kuwait and Qatar,” the president’s press service quoted him on Tuesday.
The president says that Qatar is investing money now to ensure the diversification of food security and Ukraine plays an extremely important role here. According to him, unique opportunities are opening up for us.
“Ukrainian enterprises are represented here on the Qatar International Agricultural Exhibition 2018. We met with both business representatives of Kuwait and Qatar. We expanded extraordinary opportunities for possible investments both in Ukraine and in Qatar,” Poroshenko said.
According to him, Ukrainian constructors are waiting for the reconstruction of infrastructure in preparation for the FIFA World Cup 2022, which will be held in Qatar. In particular, hotels, stadiums, traffic junctions will be built. He expressed confidence that in the near future, several well-known Ukrainian companies would take part in the tenders.
“A number of extremely important documents have been signed. In particular, documents on investment promotion – mutual protection of investments and avoidance of double taxation,” the president said.
He also informed that an “ambitious document” on military-technical cooperation had been signed. He added that the scope of bilateral cooperation with Qatar in the defense industry would be very broad. “I am very pleased with the results of these talks,” he said, adding that in the near future there would be visits of groups that would work out specific areas of cooperation.
The president also announced the establishment of an intergovernmental joint commission on economic, trade and technical cooperation. He said that he had reached an agreement with the Emir of the State of Qatar that the first constituent meeting of that commission would be held in a few months.
Poroshenko also noted that the Memorandum of Understanding between Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv and the Qatar University had been signed, providing for the exchange of students and lecturers.
Also, the parties discussed the possibility for Ukrainian military and diplomats to study Arabic language in Qatar.
An agreement between the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine and the Government of the State of Qatar on the mutual abolition of visa requirements was signed in the wake of talks between Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani. “I would like to congratulate all Ukrainians on the fact that we have finally managed to reach an agreement on the visa-free travel between Ukraine and Qatar. It gives even more value to the Ukrainian passport. It means more respect for Ukrainians. Unique tourist opportunities for Ukrainians in Qatar will be created and there will be a large number of Qatari citizens who will visit Ukraine,” Poroshenko’s press service quoted him as saying.
The Head of State also says that Doha is an air hub and two aircrafts a day were launched from Kyiv.
The agreement stipulates that citizens of Ukraine and citizens of the State of Qatar who use passports for traveling abroad valid for at least 6 months from the date of entry into the state of the other Party may enter, leave, transit and stay without a visa on its territory for up to 90 days within 180 days.
“The signing of the document will promote the development of cooperation between Ukraine and the State of Qatar in the consular, legal, economic and humanitarian spheres, lead to a new level of protection of the rights and interests of legal entities and individuals of Ukraine in Qatar, intensify contacts of business representatives of both countries, open additional opportunities for national tourism sectors, serve for the expansion of friendly ties between the peoples of Ukraine and the State of Qatar,” the Ukrainian president’s press service said.