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Qatar accepts invite for investment forum

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By Mercy Kelani

No formal agreement in place between Qatar & Nigeria on the investment forum.

The Qatari government has reversed its initial stance on its agreement to host the business and investment forum suggested by President Bola Tinubu. President Tinubu was scheduled to visit Qatar on March 2, 2024, where the forum will take place. On February 24, 2024, a leaked memo revealed that Qatar had declined an invitation to participate in an investment forum, stating that the country’s Minister of Commerce and Industry, Mohammed Bin Hamad Al-Thani, was unavailable.

In line with this, the Qatari embassy in Abuja has stated that there is currently no formal agreement in place between Qatar and Nigeria concerning the investment forum. In a communication sent on February 22, 2024 to the Protocol Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Nigeria, the Embassy of Qatar in Abuja made mention of this specific detail. On February 23, 2024, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry in Qatar expressed regret for declining the proposed business visit in a letter received by the ministry.

President Tinubu is scheduled to attend the forum as a guest.

More so, the Presidency responded to the supposed rejection by stating that Tinubu was not ignored by the Qatari government. An upcoming business forum between Nigerian and Qatari investors was described as a minor setback in the series of events leading up to the President’s official trip to Qatar. The insinuation that the authorities in Qatar have shown disrespect towards the Nigerian leader in relation to a business and investment forum has been refuted in a statement issued by Bayo Onanuga, Special Adviser on Information and Strategy for President Tinubu.

Also, the forum, while important, is separate from the crucial state visit that President Tinubu is scheduled to attend as a guest, read the statement released on Saturday. In an official statement titled ‘President Bola Tinubu’s trip to Qatar,’ Onanuga addressed a leaked communication exchange between the foreign ministries of Nigeria and Qatar. The statement clarified that Tinubu’s state visit was proceeding as planned, with the Nigerian leader set to engage in crucial discussions on diplomacy and economics with the Qatari leadership during his time in the country.

Tinubu will be visiting Qatar from March 2nd to 3rd, 2024.

Furthermore, in an unexpected turn of events, the Qatari has officially announced that the business meeting will coincide with Tinubu’s upcoming visit to the country. This information was conveyed in a memo dated February 25, 2024, and sent to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Qatar embassy has announced that H.E. Bola Ahmed Tinubu, President of Nigeria, will be visiting Qatar from March 2nd to 3rd, 2024. They have also mentioned the Business and Investment Forum (BIF) scheduled to take place on the side lines of the President’s visit on March 2nd, 2024.

This information by the State is according to their reference Note: Ref: QEA/FA/057/24 dated 22/02/2024. As per the request of the Nigerian side, the Qatar Chamber of Commerce will be hosting the event on March 3, 2024. The Embassy is pleased to inform all Nihrriand of this upcoming event. The State of Qatar and the Federal Republic of Nigeria share a strong and friendly relationship, marked by mutual agreement on various international and regional matters.

Former President Buhari signed several agreements during his regime.

Significant progress has been made in bilateral ties, notably following the peaceful presidential elections and former President Muhammadu Buhari’s successful election. This positive development was evident in former President Buhari’s visit to Doha, hosted by His Royal Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, the Emir of Qatar, resulting in the signing of several agreements. Additionally, His Highness, the Amir of Qatar, reciprocated the gesture by visiting Nigeria on April 23, 2019, following former President Buhari’s earlier visit to Doha.

Related Link

Qatar Embassy in Abuja: Website

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