Qatar’s Emir landed yesterday in Senegal at the start of a six-nation tour to West Africa as Doha seeks out new markets.
As part of the African tour, Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani is due to visit Burkina Faso, the Ivory Coast, Ghana, Guinea and Mali.
The spokeswoman of the Qatari Foreign Ministry, Lulwa Al Khater, said in a press conference that the Emir’s tour is a “continuation of the continental tours which the Emir began last year”.
The visit, Al Khater added, is part of Doha’s drive to open up new markets and diversify its economy amid an ongoing blockade by its neighbours.
Al Thani is accompanied by a high-ranking delegation which includes the state Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mohammed Bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, other ministers and a delegation from the Qatar Fund for Development, according to Al Khater.
“During the visit, Al Thani will sign investment projects, partnerships and cooperation agreements with the six African countries,” Al Khater added.
Qatar will also be providing $13.8 million to fund a cancer hospital in Burkina Faso, the spokeswoman pointed out.
On 5 June, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt severed ties with Qatar on claims it supported terrorism and then imposed punitive measures on it. Doha denied the accusations and said it was facing a campaign of lies and fabrications.