Elevated PH-Qatar relations seen with Amir state visit: DFA

By Joyce Ann L. Rocamora

April 21, 2024, 12:11 pm

MANILA – Qatari Amir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani’s state visit to the Philippines will serve as a “springboard” for the elevation of ties between the four-decade-old partners, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said.

DFA Assistant Secretary for Middle East Affairs Mardomel Celo Melicor said the Philippines and Qatar already enjoy “cordial and vibrant” bilateral relations.

He said the state visit on Sunday and Monday can ramp up trade, investment, food security and tourism cooperation, among others.

For more than four decades, the two countries successfully established productive partnerships in the field of labor and development.

Enhanced socio-economic and cultural collaborations are also being actively pursued, Melicor said.

He said Doha and Manila share common interests, hold similar positions on many issues, and have supported each other in multilateral fora.

“In enriching the enduring people-to-people ties between the Philippines and Qatar, there are initiatives to explore possible engagements in culture, education and sports,” Melicor said.

“There are also efforts to broaden the two countries’ existing fields of cooperation to encompass agriculture, climate change, and energy security, among others,” he added.

Qataris, he noted, are being invited to participate in economic sectors that have recently been opened to foreign investors.

The Amir will hold a bilateral meeting with President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. and Cabinet secretaries to discuss political relations and the strengthening of economic and socio-cultural ties.

The Amir and the President will also be witnessing the signing of several bilateral agreements in various fields, including climate change, consular matters and the youth.

Qatar hosts approximately 273,000 Filipino nationals and is one of the top destinations for land-based Filipino workers in the Middle East.

“Its economic diversification blueprint, forming part of the National Vision 2030, helped elevate the country towards its current position as among the region's most influential,” Melicor said.

“The Philippines also recognizes Qatar's active efforts to preserve and strengthen a rules-based international order,” he added. (PNA)