Qatari Emir Regrets Fallout With Siege Countries

Published November 7th, 2018 - 07:11 GMT
The Amir said the country's exports increased by 18 percent after the blockade. (AFP)
The Amir said the country's exports increased by 18 percent after the blockade. (AFP)

The Amir HH Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani on Tuesday said the continuation of conflicts in the region was regrettable, but added that the"crises will pass".

"History teaches us that crises are destined to pass but their mishandling may linger and leave behind long-lasting repercussions," the Amir said, while addressing the 47th Ordinary Session of the Advisory (Shura) Council, which he inaugurated on Tuesday.

"It is indeed unfortunate that the ongoing Gulf crisis revealed the failure of the GCC to attain its objectives and meet the aspirations of our Gulf peoples," he said, referring to the Saudi-led siege of Qatar since last year.

He said the crisis has weakened the bloc's capability to face challenges and marginalised its regional and international role.

However, he added, the siege had acted as a catalyst for Qatar's growth and self-reliance.

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"Qatar's economic resilience against external tremors has been boosted and our self-reliance has increased, the bonds with our allies have become stronger than before, and our relations with most of the countries have developed. 

"Most importantly, the Qataris have become more committed to the ethics they are famous for, and their awareness and realisation of the scale of their country's accomplishments and the importance of national sovereignty and independence of our political decision, under which these accomplishments were achieved, have been deepened," he noted.

The Amir said the country's exports increased by 18 percent after the blockade, leading to a significant improvement in the public budget, trade balance and current account. 

The banking system, he added, retrieved in less than 10 months the level of indicators that prevailed before the blockade.

"In addition, the Qatar Central Bank has regained its reserve level and the Qatari Riyal maintained its value and free circulation," the Amir said. 

The number of factories operating in Qatar has increased by about 14 percent after the blockade and these factories managed to achieve a great deal of self-sufficiency in some food products and consumables, he said.

"We have achieved great and rapid progress in nation-building, living standard and human development in health and education. We have many challenges ahead in these areas, and we have to ascertain commitment to the work ethics and the act of giving to the society." 

The Amir also reiterated Qatar's support for the Palestinian cause, the stability, unity and territorial integrity of Yemen and to help keep Syria as a united country. 

"We also look forward to accelerate the political solution in Libya and call upon all factions and groups of the Libyan people to achieve national reconciliation," he said.

The Amir also pointed out that preparations for the election of the Legislative Council are under way at the level of the ministerial and experts committees.

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