Amir Visit A Testament To Robust Co-Operation: Cyprus President

(MENAFN- Gulf Times) President of Cyprus Nicos Christodoulides has said the visit of His Highness the Amir sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani to Cyprus is a testament to the robust co-operation that already exists between the two countries.
In an interview with Qatar News Agency (QNA), the president said the Amir's visit“is not only a celebration of our longstanding partnership, but also a clear indication of our mutual willingness to further expand our relations, both Politically and economically.”
He added that politically, this visit underscores the continuously growing and evolving co-operation and ties between the two nations of which he is personally extremely pleased.
He explained that economically, the visit is a promising sign of deeper bilateral co-operation including economic integration and collaboration. Cyprus and Qatar have already forged a pivotal co-operation in the energy sector, exemplified by QatarEnergy international's strategic participation in Cyprus's Exclusive Economic Zone, Cyprus president said.
He added that both countries recognise the untapped potential that exists in sectors such as technology, infrastructure, renewable energy and agriculture, noting that projects in areas such as renewable energy, biotechnology, and information technology have the potential to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time, benefiting the citizens of both countries.
By exploring these areas, the two countries aim to create new opportunities for investment, trade, and economic growth, he said.
The president also discussed the key topics to be addressed during the visit of the Amir, including strengthening economic and trade relations, exploring ways to increase investment, advancing bilateral relations to a strategic level, discussing strategies to ensure regional stability and security, identifying opportunities for cultural programmes to build deeper mutual understanding and connections between the peoples of both nations, collaborating on international issues, and emphasising the importance of joint efforts to address pressing challenges.
He noted that the exchange of official visits at the highest levels between the two countries has significantly strengthened political and economic ties, fostering a climate of mutual trust and co-operation, adding that these visits have led to the exchange and evaluation of the texts of several bilateral agreements, enhancing trade, investment, and cultural exchange.
With a shared vision and aligned strategic interests, the relationship between the two countries is poised to reach unprecedented levels, he said, adding that both leaderships are committed to exploring new opportunities in technology, energy, and education, investments, further solidifying their partnership. This collaborative spirit not only meets the aspirations of the governments but also benefits citizens, paving the way for a prosperous future.
“The previous exchange of official visits between Cyprus and Qatar has laid a solid foundation for a strong partnership, which now stands ready to advance to the next level,” he said.
President Christodoulides emphasised the importance of exploring synergies on the basis of the strategic visions of both nations and identify common areas of cooperation to strengthen economic relations.
“Just as Qatar National Vision 2030 aims to transform its economy through diversification and sustainable development, Cyprus has outlined its Vision2035 strategy, focused on achieving a sustainable economy through green and digital transitions,” he pointed out.
He explained that understanding where each country aspires to be in the coming years will enable them to pinpoint synergies and collaborative opportunities. He expressed his confidence that both Cyprus and Qatar can forge a mutually beneficial co-operation that addresses climate change, the need for economic diversification and technological advancement, ultimately enhancing the prosperity of both countries.
He also outlined the key areas of bilateral co-operation that Cyprus prioritises, which include energy co-operation, increasing bilateral trade volumes and encouraging Qatari investments in key sectors of the Cypriot economy, promoting Cyprus as a premier tourist destination for Qatari citizens and exploring collaborative opportunities to enhance tourism infrastructure and services, enhancing academic exchanges, scholarships, and cultural programmes to deepen mutual understanding and foster long-term educational and cultural ties, and collaborating on regional security initiatives and defence co-operation to address common security challenges.
Cyprus has maintained its position as a leading performer, securing its place as one of the top overachievers in the Greenfield FDI Performance Index of 2023. Specifically, Cyprus is ranked 4th in Emerging Europe and 11th globally, the President said, adding that this impressive performance is driven by diverse sectors attracting investment. Key areas include renewable energy, encompassing both generation and storage solutions, which align with global sustainability goals.
He noted that the technology sector is another major recipient of FDI, reflecting Cyprus's growing reputation as a hub for innovation and digital transformation, adding that the ICT sector share in Cyprus gross value-added reached 9.6% in 2022, making it the third-highest, after wholesale and retail trade and financial and insurance activities. Additionally, the tourism industry continues to thrive, benefiting from the island's strategic location and rich cultural heritage.
He also confirmed that the shipping industry remains a cornerstone of Cyprus's economy, leveraging the nation's maritime expertise and strategic position. Tertiary education is also a significant sector, with Cyprus emerging as a regional centre for higher education, attracting students and faculty from around the world. The health sector is expanding, driven by investments in both existing facilities (acquisitions) and new ones, while agriculture is evolving with new technologies and practices enhancing productivity and sustainability.
He affirmed that Cyprus's strategic initiatives and favorable investment climate have made it attractive for FDI across various sectors, reinforcing its status as a dynamic and attractive destination for global investors, reflecting its potential and commitment to sustainable growth.
The president praised Qatar's achievements, saying,“Qatar during the last two decades or so has embarked on a remarkable course of internal political, economic, social and cultural transformation (based on excellence and use of new technologies, hard work and task-oriented collective objectives) through which the country became a successful Arab and world model and shining paradigm, while also becoming an innovation-, educational- and athletic-hub (the successful hosting of the World Cup for example).”
The said achievements, have elevated the status of Qatar not only within the Arab world, and thus bolstering the perspectives of closer collaboration between the Arab states, but far beyond, especially in terms of mediation to resolve and settle disputes between parties and work to build-up regional consensus, where peace and stability, will permanently thrive.
Economically, he noted that Qatar's policies, significant investments in infrastructure, and establishment of free zones have attracted substantial foreign direct investment, while initiatives like the Qatar National Vision 2030 emphasise sustainable and diversified growth. This approach encourages intra-regional investments, fosters economic co-operation, and enhances the collective economic resilience of the Arab world and the wider region, including Cyprus. Most importantly, the openness of Qatar to the world, fosters security in a region that desperately needs it, especially as it played a mediating role in high-profile conflicts, he added.
The president said Qatar's“current mediation efforts, together with Egypt and the US are known the world-over. We sincerely hope that these efforts for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and for releasing all hostages, will soon bear results.”


Gulf Times

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