Qatar's Finance Minister said on Friday that his country was not affected by the siege imposed by the neighbouring countries. Ali Sharif Al-Emadi noted that his country has adapted to the new conditions, achieved short and long-term gains and reinforced its economic and political powers.
Writing in Newsweek, Al-Emadi said that if the embargo was intended to bring Qatar to its knees, it has had precisely the opposite effect. "Having sensed the danger, we have seized the opportunity and bolstered ourselves politically and economically."
He pointed out that Qatar has pursued a strategy of global economic diversification for many years, investing wisely and for the long-term. "As a result, Qatar has established strong trade relationships with nations all over the world." Efforts to bolster existing relationships have been increased since 5 June when the siege was announced.
"The results are already plain to see," he explained. "The economy has shown its resilience and has successfully readjusted to the embargo. New opportunities are arising every day as a result, and the quest for self-sufficiency has become an ambition shared by all residents of Qatar."
Al-Emadi wrote about new markets and opportunities, giving as an example the new 15-year contract for liquid gas with Bangladesh.
The minister also mentioned the newly-opened Hamad Port which launched new maritime routes to various countries, including Oman, Turkey, India and Pakistan, thereby bypassing Jebel Ali port in the UAE. As a result, shipping costs have fallen by 31 per cent since the blockade was imposed.