Three decades down the lane after establishment of diplomatic relations between Qatar and Russia on August 2, 1988, the ties between two brotherly countries today have touched new heights spanning multiple dimensions including economy, security, culture among others.
Today, Qatar and Russia are celebrating 30th anniversary of their diplomatic relations with a bright record of friendly ties set in the last three decades and aims of further expansions in the days and years to come.
This year both countries are also marking year 2018 as ‘Qatar-Russia 2018 Year of Culture’ which is being organised in partnership with leading institutions in Qatar and Russia. Officially Qatar Russia 2018 Year of Culture was launched in February 2018.
Amir H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani visited the Russian Federation in March and July this year. During his two-day visit to Russia from March 25 to 26, H H the Amir signed a number of cooperation agreements while he received FIFA World Cup host mantle from President Valdimir Putin on July 15, 2018, the day of 2018 Russia World Cup final. Earlier, H H the Amir had visited Russia in January 2016.
The Russian Federation during the blockade of Qatar supported Qatar’s principled stance of resolving the crisis through negotiations. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs H E Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani paid two visits to Russia in 2017 during which he met with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Moscow, while the Russian Foreign Minister visited Doha in August 2017.
Russian Defence Minister Sergey Shoygu also visited Doha in October 2017 and met with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Defence Affairs H E Dr. Khalid bin Mohamed Al Attiyah. A technical military cooperation agreement, a memorandum of understanding related to air defense and a legal contract on the general conditions of military supplies were signed during the meeting.
The two defence ministers also met in Moscow in August 2017 on the sidelines of a military exhibition, and discussed bilateral relations in the field of defense and capacity development in all areas, in particular the field of air defense.
Amir H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin witnessed on March 26, 2018 the signing of cooperation agreement in the field of science and education between Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF) and Rosneft, which aims to open a research centre for Rosneft at the Qatar Science and Technology Park.
H H the Emir and Russian President also discussed ways to strengthen the bilateral cooperation in several fields, including defence, energy, economy, investment, trade exchange and scientific research.
Both leaders also discussed means to boost cooperation in the organization of the World Cup and the exchange of expertise, especially as Russia will host it in 2018 and Qatar in 2022.
Stressing that communication between the two countries is continuing permanently, President Putin said, “Relations between Qatar and Russia have completed their 30th year by 2018. The volume of trade and investment exchange is increasing, especially last year, but it remains without the aspiration of the two countries, which look forward to its development.”
In the same meeting, H H the Emir pointed out the importance of 2018 for Qatar and Russia as their common cultural year, praising the great cooperation between the two countries in the field of culture.
During the visit, H H the Amir and the Russian President discussed the results of the work of the Qatari-Russian joint committee for trade, economic and technical cooperation and the prospects of enhancing them, as well as ways to develop military cooperation between the two countries.