Qatar, Sudan in farming tie-up
Sudan Tribune | July 22, 2008
QATAR (Gulf Times) -- As part of Doha’s efforts to ensure food security, Qatar and Sudan yesterday agreed to establish a joint holding company, which is expected to focus on agricultural investment, food industry and animal husbandry.
The company, which will produce wheat, corn and oilseeds among other things, is expected to benefit from the huge investment opportunities in Sudan in the field of food industries. It will aim to meet the food demand of the Arab markets, an official spokesman said.
A Qatari delegation is in Khartoum now finalising the details of the investment and co-operation between the two countries.
A board member at the Zad Holding Company (previously Qatar Flour Mills), Ali Mohamed al-Qubaisi, who is a member of the Qatari delegation, told the Sudanese News Agency (Suna) that Qatar wanted to avail of the huge natural resources of Sudan.
Boosting Qatar’s food security is a priority for Zad Holding Company which is currently exploring opportunities of direct investment in agriculture and animal husbandry in Sudan, a senior official at the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) and another member of the Qatari delegation said.
Nasser Mohamed al-Hajiri said the visit of the Qatari team aimed at opening new horizons for joint investment as well as direct investment in the production of wheat, corn, fodder and animal husbandry.
“We have clear instructions from HH the Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani to avail of the investment opportunities in Sudan. Both Qatar and Sudan expect future partnerships, especially economic co-operation for the betterment of the two peoples,” al-Hajiri said.
Zad Holding, a government-owned company, has a capital base of QR1bn.
Al-Qubaisi said that Qatari and Sudanese delegates were working together to select the locations of the projects available for investment.
The joint meeting underway in Khartoum urged for the activation of the Qatari-Sudanese Business Council.
With the agreement to set up the joint holding company, Qatar has taken steps for strategic investment in Sudan’s agriculture and food industries as well as promoting the economic co-operation between the two countries.
Al-Zubeir Bashir Taha, Sudan’s minister of agriculture, welcomed Qatari investment in Sudan, saying that his government was very keen on removing all obstacles facing Qatari investors.
As food prices soar the world over, there have been major efforts by Gulf countries, particularly the UAE and Saudi Arabia, to invest heavily in agriculture in foreign countries.
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