• Saturday, April 20, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

Qatar declines business talks with Nigeria

Tinubu Qatar

Authorities in Qatar have said the Arabian country is not ready to hold a proposed business parley with Nigeria at the time scheduled.

However, the Qatari government said it will be open to a rescheduling of the proposed summit.

Qatar, a fellow oil producing country with about 1,300,000 barrels per day production made it’s position known in a note-gone-public by the Embassy of the State of Qatar in Abuja.

The Qatari government noted in the letter that it is unable to host the Business and Investment Forum proposed by the Protocol Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Nigeria during the State visit of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

The letter dated December 22, 2023, stated reasons for the refusal including the absence of a signed agreement on investment promotion and protection between Qatar and Nigeria, official missions undertaken by the Minister of Commerce and Industry during the visit period, and Qatar’s hosting of a Web Summit during the suggested period.

The letter read: “The Embassy of the State of Qatar in Abuja presents its compliments to the Protocol Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Regarding the upcoming State visit of H.E. Bola Ahmed Tinubu, President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to Qatar from 2nd – 3rd March 2024 and with reference to your Note…which proposed holding of a Business and Investment Forum (BIF)… The Embassy has the honour to inform that the Ministry of Commerce and Industry in Qatar apologizes that it will not be able to hold a Business and Investment Forum as proposed by Nigerian side due to the following reasons:

“Unfortunately, there is no any agreement signed between the State of Qatar and the Federal Republic of Nigeria on Investment Promotion and Protection…His Excellency the Minister of Commerce and Industry will be carrying out official missions outside the country during the upcoming visit period…The State of Qatar will be hosting a Web Summit during the suggested period and the State’s authorities will be preoccupied with this event.

“The Embassy of the State of Qatar avails itself of this opportunity to renew to the Protocol Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Republic of Nigeria the assurances of its highest consideration.”

For years, Nigeria and Qatar have demonstrated efforts to strengthen bilateral ties and boost economic activity. In 2021, Qatar announced plans to invest $5bn in Nigeria’s economy following discussions with the oil-rich country in partnership with Nigeria’s Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF).