By Ganesh Bhaskar Lata
The Qatari- Turkey concordat may possibly be the strongest concordat of the 21st Century. The bilateral relationship between these two countries date back to the Period of the Ottomon Empire which ruled most of Eastern Europe and Central Asia. With Qatar gaining Independence in 1970, Turkey was their first entente due to similar religious and political ideologies. It gained further momentum post 2000, during the Syrian Civil War and Egyptian Crisis. Both the countries strongly condemned Egypt’s former President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s leadership. When pro Islamist candidate, Mohammed Morsi from the Freedom and Justice Party was elected, it was strongly supported by Qatar and Turkey while most countries part of the GCC opposed it.
To further increase the vigour of their alliance, Qatar had announced a staggering investment of Twenty Billion Dollars. This agreement was entered into in order to increase the pair’s trade relations. Solely In the year 2017, the volume of trade between the two countries reached one Billion Dollars. The Qatari Ambassador, Fikret Ozer in a press statement speculated that the volume of trade would reach two Billion Dollars in the year 2018.
Turkey was one of the few countries that supported Qatar during the diplomatic crisis in 2017.. During the said crisis trade and travel bans were imposed on Qatar by several countries in the gulf region. But Turkey was the only country that supported Qatar amid its crisis. By gaining military aid two days after the crisis began, Qatar developed a strong alliance for probabilities of an armed insurgency by other countries in the Gulf region. President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan himself has gone and record to state that the Qatari diplomatic ban is ‘inhumane and un Islamic.’
When all the trade routes from Qatar were blocked, Turkey sent several Embargos of food within a week of the crisis. The country sent planes full of high quality products which ranged from basic vegetables to dairy and meat. Although, the price of food did increase eventually due to the sudden increase of imports via airways, it did not affect the citizens of Qatar as it rose by a minimal 4.2%.
Qatar has also been seen as a prime area to invest in the eyes of Turkish investors. The 2022 Fifa World Cup which is set to be held in Qatar is primarily an investment venture by Turkish capitalists. The amount invested by these venture capitalists inter alia the Fifa World Cup is approximately 11.6 Billion Dollars. The direction of investments is not one sided as Qatar, which just invested 20 Billion Dollars in Turkey in the year 2017, plans to invest another 19 Billion Dollars in the country for the development of agriculture and livestock. Due to the mutual investments, Mohamed Bin Tinwar, the Qatar Chamber Vice Chairman, stated, “Qatari-Turkish relations are distinct and can serve as a model for other countries.”
To improve the bilateral trade and investment relations further between the two countries, the Qatari capital Doha is hosting the second edition of the Turkey Expo. This high profile trade fair saw the likes of several diplomats and venture capitalists. It has participation from over 100 Turkish companies from a variety of sectors such as construction, real estate, technology, health, energy, etc. The minister of Economy and Commerce of Qatar stated that the trade fair will contribute to the ability of Qatari importers to contact Turkish manufacturers and represent them in the local market.
The alliance together has likewise propelled a web based business gateway known as The Turkish Souq for the citizens of Qatar with a specific end goal to purchase and exchange items. The online stage,ERRE which is a consequence of the association between Qatar Post and Turkey Post, will offer access to up to 5mn Turkish things running from dress, shoes and decorations and furthermore vehicle parts and everything amidst, all at a negligible cost.
With Turkey and Qatar increasing their political economic relations on a rapid pace compared to other alliances in this world, other political alliances are no match to this concordat. The Qatari- Turkey concordat can serve as an adept model for other countries.This strong alliance is also likely to last for a long period of time. Given the diplomatic ban on Qatar has been revoked, the Turkey still supports the Qatari Government.
Turkey, Backing Doha in Gulf Crisis Votes for Troop Deployment to Qatar”. teleSUR English.
Ganesh Bhaskar lata, the author, is a Second Year B.A., LL.B. Student at Jindal Global Law School.
Featured Image Source : Iblagh News