The Peninsula, 4/29/2006
El Salvador keen on trade deal with Qatar
Doha: El Salvador, the world’s top coffee producer, is keen to sign a free trade agreement with Qatar. El Salvador’s foreign minister, Francisco Lions, was here on a brief visit and met a number of key officials in this regard.
On Thursday, he called on the Chairman of the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry (QCCI), Mohamed Khalid Al Mana. Lions said that once Qatar and his country have concluded a free trade deal, the cost of coffee imports will come down to the benefit of consumers in Qatar.
El Salvador is a large producer of sugar and medical equipment as well and is keen to export these items to the GCC markets.
A number of El Salvador’s businessmen were accompanying the minister and they had a meeting with their Qatari counterparts. Present were Ahmed Hussain Al Khalaf, a prominent Qatari businessman, and officials of the Qatar-German Medical Devices Company (QGMDC).
El Salvador has free trade agreements with the US, Chile and Mexico and will soon be signing such deals with some key member countries of the European Union (EU).
A delegation from Qatar is expected to visit El Salvador and finalise the signing of the free trade agreement in September this year.
The QGMDC evinced a keen interest in some of the medical equipment manufactured in El Salvador and it was later suggested by the visitors that the company could set up operations in El Salvador from where their products could be exported to the entire Central American Market.