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Russia hopes for further growth of trade turnover with Qatar and for development of bilateral cooperation in the investment and energy sectors, Russia’s Foreign Minister Lavrov said.
“We have confirmed the positive dynamics of the trade turnover, which doubled last year, though in absolute values, of course, it leaves much to be desired,” the Russian minister said. “We have agreed that at the upcoming meeting of the joint inter-governmental commission on economic cooperation, due in late April in Doha, the countries will discuss steps to fix the positive tendency and to develop further the economic ties.”
“Following the agreement Qatar’s Investment Authority participated in Rosneft’s capital, there are also additional plans between our investment structures, including with involvement of the Russian Direct Investment Fund, which is also a very positive tendency,” Lavrov added.
In recent months, Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund has invested in Russian oil giant Rosneft PJSC.
Moscow and Doha are also “successfully developing cooperation in the energy sector, both in bilateral forms and in cooperation between OPEC and non-cartel countries, as well as in the framework of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum,” Lavrov said.
Al Thani said Qatar wants to develop cooperation with Russia on coordinating their positions on stabilizing oil prices.
“Today we held a constructive meeting with my colleague Minister Lavrov. A significant progress has been achieved, we managed to achieve much in bilateral relations since 2016 when a high-level meeting took place in Moscow. We see that a powerful impetus especially in the sphere of investment was given. We continue our efforts on cooperation in the gas sphere as well as agreements on cooperation under the aegis of OPEC for maintaining oil prices at the level we need,” Al-Thani said.
Gas-rich Qatar posted its first budget deficit in 15 years in 2016. The Qatari economy has been hurt by the global slump in energy prices and its $200 billion spending plan for the FIFA World Cup in 2022.
Qatar and Russia are on opposing sides of the Syrian civil war.
Qatar is a US ally and leading backer of rebel groups that are waging war against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
TBP and Agencies