Latvian PM wants stronger bilateral relations with Qatar
DOHA LATVIAN Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis has expressed satisfaction over his recent visit to Qatar describing it as the “first high-level bilateral meeting between Qatar and Latvia”.
The earlier exchanges took place on the sidelines of conferences or other meetings, he said.
Dombrovskis said that the talks held with Qatari officials dealt with political and economic relations. He expressed hope that the visit would contribute to enhancing all aspects of the relations.
He said the visit’s programme featured the first official meetings with the Emir His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al Thani and the Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs HE Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabor al Thani.
There were also meetings held between members of his accompanying delegation and their Qatari peers in organisations like Hasad Food Company and Qatar Airways.
The Latvian Prime Minister said his country was interested in developing better cooperation with Qatar in various political and economic fields, noting that Qatar and Latvia are currently working on some treaties, agreements and memorandums of understanding.
“The Qatari side was active in proposing a range of agreements. They are waiting for our response which will come as quickly as possible,” he said, praising the efforts made by Qatar’s leadership to achieve development in all sectors.
On the potential areas of cooperation, the Latvian leader said that his country was focusing on three major sectors, namely, energy, transport and finance. He pointed out that Latvia was currently working on a project for a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal to diversify gas supplies.
“Latvia will seek cooperation from Qatar Bourse (Qatar Exchange) as a supplier and investor in this LNG terminal,” the leader said.
In the transport and finance sectors, Dombrovskis pointed to meetings held between members of his country’s delegation and officials of Qatar Airways to discuss future prospects of cooperation between the two companies, as well as meeting held with the Qatar Ports Authority to discuss cooperation between the ports of the two countries.
“There are two major ports in Latvia. A third, smaller one, transports a substantial amount of cargo and plays a big role in the East-West transit trade,” he said.
In regard to the financial sector, the Latvian Prime Minister revealed that his country would like to sell some state-owned banks. “We want to increase the volume of trade between the two countries, especially in the fields of timber industry and agricultural production. These are the biggest export sectors. Our country’s economy is diversified.
We have machinery, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, and Information Communication Technology, among other sectors,” the Latvian Prime Minister said.
He further noted that the business delegation that accompanied him during his visit to Qatar covered all sectors of investment.