My diaries in Qatar- Reforms and Challenges – Dumitru-Viorel Focșa

With regards to the NHRC Conference in Doha, where I was invited as vice president of Executive Board of the Romanian Group to the Inter-Parliamentary Union, I have to welcome all the Qatari initiatives regarding human rights. Nevertheless I do support this initiatives having in mind the respect for Qatar people culture and tradition.

United in diversity means, first of all, to have consideration and respect for your partener moral values that helped his people to survive over the centurie.

• Our cooperation with the Gulf region remains of high importance, given the traditional close relations and substantial opportunities for bilateral cooperation. To this end, Romania strongly supported the EU’s new strategic approach for the region.

• Express interest in consolidating a sustainable partnership with the State of Qatar in terms of political dialogue and economic, trade and sectoral cooperation.

• We have high ambitions for the bilateral agenda in 2023. We are committed to raise the level of our political dialogue.

• [Convey our willingness to organise an Economic Forum in the margins of the future high-level visit in Doha, as an important step towards exploring further Romanian-Qatari business opportunities.
• Romania attaches great importance to the Gulf region and is dedicated to further develop its relations with the Gulf countries in the framework of its traditional ties of cooperation, dialogue and friendship with the Middle Eastern countries.

• Satisfaction for the excellent bilateral relations between Romania and Qatar. Remain committed to continue the positive trend of our political and diplomatic contacts.

• The parliamentary diplomacy remains one of the pillars of our bilateral relations and we are determined to consolidate our collaboration and to raise the dynamics of contacts.

• In this vein, the activity of the Qatari Friendship Parliamentary Group in the Romanian Parliament is particularly active and has an important contribution in supporting bilateral cooperation, as well as in promoting projects of common interest.

• Reiterate Romania’s commitment to further advance and develop bilateral dialogue with the State of Qatar, with a specific focus on the economic and sectoral cooperation; food security, climate change, green economies are shared top priorities.

• Keen interest in cooperating with Qatar in the energy field, taking into account Romanian companies’ proficiency in this area. Romania has gas interconnections with countries that have LNG terminals; and Romania could also play a role in transporting gas to other European markets (e.g. connections with HU and BG via BRUA pipeline; and with Republic of Moldova).

• Energy diversification is essential for energy security. Using different energy sources (including green/renewable), suppliers and transportation routes to reduce dependence on a single resource or provider.

• Interest to attract Qatari investments in Romania, in various fields of activity, such as agriculture, energy (including renewables), IT&C, infrastructure, real estate and tourism.

• Express interest to consolidate our bilateral economic and sectoral cooperation; a good opportunity would be the organisation of an Economic Forum on the side-lines of a future high-level visit.

• Commend the Qatari’s efforts to organize a successful 2022 FIFA World Cup.

• Welcome the cooperation between the Qatari Internal Security Forces (Lekhwyia) and the Romanian Protection and Guard Service in the field of security training, in preparation for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

• We welcomed and strongly supported COM’s Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council to exempt Qatari (and Kuwaiti) citizens from visa requirement and considers it beneficial for our economies in general and tourism in particular.

• We acknowledged Qatar accession to international instruments such as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights as well as the efforts to improve the rights of workers.

• There have been positive steps taken in the field of human rights, in particular concerning the reforms undertaken by Qatar authorities in improving migrant’s labour rights as well as women’s rights and gender equality.

• We welcome the efforts aimed at abolishing the kafalah system with a view to protecting the rights of migrant workers.

• We consider that this as a good starting point and Qatari authorities should build on what has already been achieved in this field.

• We also commend the technical cooperation with ILO which, in our view, is very important for the improvement of work conditions of migrants.
• The full enjoyment by the migrant workers of their rights is not only in their benefit, but also in the benefit of the society.

• Romania supports the UN Secretary General initiative – the Black Sea Grain Initiative – to alleviate the blockade imposed by Russia over Ukraine at the Black Sea, welcomes the Agreement signed in Istanbul, on 22nd July, a vital mechanism established for the safe transportation of grain, related foodstuffs and fertilizer, including ammonia, from designated Ukrainian ports to global markets.

• We hope that this long awaited deal will avoid a food shortage catastrophe for millions worldwide, will help reinstate confidence in the global food market and reduce food prices from their current levels.

• We need to collaborate, to find solutions, to be united, to work with likeminded countries and promote solidarity.

• Romania will continue to support all the consistent measures meant to mitigate the negative effects concerning global food security stemming from the current geopolitical context.

• Romania will take all the necessary actions to avoid negative consequences for the third countries that import grains and will continue to deliver grains to those in need.

• We rely on our partners to play together an active role and to have a solid contribution in helping Ukraine.

• We also encourage you to further develop the co-operation with Romania and other European partners in the field of energy.

• The current crisis that Europe is facing could become an opportunity to level-up the cooperation between our countries in this field.

• We need big projects to invest in both traditional sources, like oil and gas, and renewables.

During this three day that we spent in Doha at the invitation of NHRC of Qatar, we concluded that State of Qatar can be the leader in the Middle East region on human rights matters.
My best wishes to Qatari people!

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