H.H. the Amir visits the Kingdom of Belgium and the European Institutions: forging new bonds for collaboration

His Highness the Amir visits the Kingdom of Belgium and the European Institutions: forging new bonds for collaboration

On Monday the 5th of March His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani arrived in Brussels for his first visit to the Kingdom of Belgium, the European institutions and NATO. The visit provided the Amir and his Belgian and European counterparts with an opportunity to openly discuss the strengthening of bilateral collaborations and it gave way to future developments in numerous fields.

On Tuesday 6 March, the Prime Minister of Belgium, Charles Michel greeted HH the Amir and the delegation accompanying him at Egmont Palace in Brussels. The discussions that followed focused on strengthening of mutual collaboration within business, as well as energy, sport and health sector. Furthermore, common issues, such as terrorism threats in Europe and the Middle East, were addressed. At the same time, the two State leaders witnessed the signing of two agreements, one established airline connections between the two countries, and the second forging a collaboration between Qatar University and the University of Hasselt in Belgium, aiming at reinforcing academic and research cooperation and to support the exchange of knowledge between the institutions.

On the same day, HH the Amir met with King Philippe of Belgium at the Royal Palace in Brussels. During the meeting, commitments towards bilateral collaboration were renewed and  matters of common interest were also discussed.  Shortly after, HH the Amir and the King exchanged views with future investments and exchange opportunities with Belgian and Qatari Businessmen at a Qatari- Belgian Business forum.

On Wednesday, HH the Amir met with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and Federica Mogherini, the High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission. Discussions revolved around the resolution of the current Gulf crisis, in this regard, the High representative reiterated the EU´s support for resolution efforts. In addition, exchanges also considered new ways to forge stronger collaborative bonds between Qatar and the European Union. Towards this, Mogherini and Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Qatar, HE Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, signed a Cooperation Arrangement, in the presence of HH the Amir. The Cooperation Arrangement will be the starting point for enhanced collaboration between the two parties in areas of mutual interest such as the development of the private sector, research and innovation.

HH the Amir also met with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg. The session served to review the NATO – Qatar relationship, jointly discuss a number of common security issues and political developments, along with plans to further promote peace and security worldwide. To this concern, an agreement was signed by both parties which ratified collaborations in military and security matters. The meeting terminated with the Secretary-General of NATO thanking HH the Amir and the State of Qatar for its role and efforts in the fight against terrorism and its cooperation with NATO in this area.

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