Japan's ambassador to Qatar Kazuo Sunaga highlighted the deep bilateral and strategic relations between his country and Qatar currently and over the past years.
The Japanese ambassador in a statement to Qatar News Agency (QNA) on the occasion of Qatar National Day, that the year 2021 marks the 50th anniversary of the bilateral relations which have been characterised by a mutual trust and fruitful co-operation at all times, pointing out that economic exchanges have been the backbone of these relations for more than four decades, but thanks to the strong political will of the two countries, solid foundations for bilateral co-operation have been established in various fields not only in economy but also in the cultural, technical, scientific, defence and security fields.
He said Qatar and Japan share similar views on international and humanitarian issues, with both countries firmly believing that the international peace and security in the world cannot be brought about by force or coercion but through dialogue based on the principles of equality and adherence to the international law.
In terms of the economic relations, he said Qatar is the third largest supplier of both LNG and oil to Japan, while Japan is also the number one trade partner of Qatar with a trade volume reaching about $14bn during 2019. Major Japanese companies are contributing to Qatar's vital infrastructure projects such as Doha Metro, Hamad International Airport, and others, he added.
He explained that the co-operation between Qatar and Japan is extending beyond energy and infrastructure projects to include co-operation in promising projects as joint investment in power plants in third countries and the production of new types of clean energy, Human Genome Project (HGP) which aims to obtain more accurate and applicable medical treatment for all humans, the Golden Pass LNG project, Qatar University's support for Islamic studies in Japan, and experimental plant for industrial waste water desalination.
Qatar has channelled significant efforts into the cultural, sports, education, medical care, and tourism sectors, emphasising on the knowledge-based economy, the thing that has contributed to complete the picture of Qatar as a strong and modern emerging country in the world today, he said, adding that Qatar's active diplomacy to promote better and closer relations with other countries is also highly appreciated. With Japan in particular, Qatar has always shared an excellent and special relations since the establishment of its diplomatic relations, he stressed.
He explained that the Qatari response to the Covid-19 crisis was commendable in terms of the efforts made not only to curb its negative impacts on its citizens and territory but also to support countries least able to deal with the ordeal.
He emphasised that Qatar was able to take swift and firm public health measures to prevent further spread of the infection in the community.
"I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the people who have been dedicating themselves to tackle the pandemic, such as the medical teams, the academic and research partners as well as the law enforcement officers. I would like to express my special thanks to Qatar Airways that maintained a direct daily flight to Narita/Tokyo and to support Japanese nationals around the world to return to their home safely during the most difficult time," he added.
He concluded by congratulating His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, the honorable people and esteemed government of Qatar on this auspicious occasion, stressing that Qatar has achieved prominence in the Middle East region as well as in the international arena under the leadership of HH the Amir. He stated that Qatar has been actively engaged in such peace processes as Afghanistan peace talks, and these efforts have evidently emphasised the role of Qatar as a stabilising factor in the region.
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