The Qatari Businessmen Association holds a luncheon in honor of the Mayor of London

03 Oct 2023 QBA Office

QBA Members attended

Mayor of London: We welcome the visit of Qatari businessmen to London where great investment opportunities to discover.

The Qatari Businessmen Association organized a luncheon in honor of the visit of His Excellency Lord Alderman Nicholas Lyons, Mayor of the City of London, and his accompanying delegation, in the presence of Sheikh Faisal bin Qassim Al Thani, QBA Chairman. The luncheon was also attended by His Excellency Mr. John Wilkes, Ambassador of the United Kingdom to Qatar, Mr. Olivier Christian, Chairman of the Trade Commission for the Middle East and Pakistan.

From the Qatari side, the lunch was attended by: Mr. Sharida Al Kaabi and Mr. Saud Al Mana, QBA Board members, and from QBA members: Sheikh Faisal bin Fahad Al Thani, Mr. Ashraf Abu Issa, Mr. Nabil Abu Issa, Sheikh Khalid bin Faisal bin Qassim Al Thani, Mr. Maqbool Habib Khalfan, Mr. Yousef Ibrahim Al Mahmoud, Mr. Mohammad Al-Misnad, in addition to Ms. Sarah Abdallah, QBA Deputy General Manager.

H.E. Lord Alderman thanked Sheikh Faisal bin Qassim Al Thani and QBA members for this meeting and noted that this visit aims at discussing ways of economic, commercial and financial cooperation between British and Qatari institutions, and supporting joint investment opportunities in many major infrastructure projects, between the British and Qatari sides. He also expressed the importance of the Qatari market for British businessmen and companies, as investment opportunities have increased with the massive development plans pursued by the State of Qatar and its endeavor to develop infrastructure and diversify sources of income.

Invitation to visit London
During the meeting, Lord Alderman invited Qatari businessmen to visit London as the city offers new investment opportunities in financial services, real estate, tourism and the retail sectors.

For his part, Sheikh Faisal bin Qassim Al Thani welcomed the mayor and his accompanying delegation. He also pointed out that Qatari-British relations have been greatly strengthened in recent years by the increase in Qatari investments in Britain. He added that Qatar today is a real opportunity for many investors around the world, as the country enjoys security, in addition to various opportunities to develop many industries other than those of oil and gas.

Mr. Sherida Al Kaabi, QBA Board member, pointed out that the economic relations between the two countries and the growth of trade in recent years are the best evidence of the exceptional relations between Doha and London, as the United Kingdom remains the first destination for Qatari investments.

The Mayor of London also spoke about Britain's economic strength and its continued position as a financial center on the European continent despite its exit from the EU.
For his part, Mr. Saud Al Mana spoke about the role of the Qatari Businessmen Association in facilitating communication between the business communities in the two countries, and the association’s readiness to cooperate with investment promotion organisations representing the private sector in the United Kingdom in order to promote greater economic interaction and trade exchange between the two countries, explaining what incentives Qatar provides to encourage investments.

Growth of bilateral Trade
It is worth noting that the volume of trade between the two countries doubled and reached $10 billion in 2022, an increase of 100 % over 2021, while the State of Qatar is the third largest market for British exports in the Middle East and North Africa, as it exports clothing, jewelry, food, and electrical appliances. Qatar's investments in Britain exceed $40 billion, and are constantly growing, including shares in the Sainsburys chain, BAA, which operates four airports in the United Kingdom, the London Stock Exchange, Barclays Bank, the Shard building in London and the Olympic Village.

In terms of investments between the two countries, the number of British companies operating in the State of Qatar has reached more than 1,200 companies active in various economic fields and many strategic sectors such as real estate development, hospitality, health care, technology, and others.