Zimbabwe’s first ever engagement with Qatar has started on a high note after the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the two countries seeking to find areas of cooperation for economic development.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who is on a three day state visit to the gulf state, today met the Emir of Qatar, His Highness, Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad where talks centred on investment in Zimbabwe across various sectors of the economy.

Members of Cde Mnangagwa’s delegation, Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa; Lands, Agriculture and Rural Resettlement Minister Perrence Shiri, and Mines and Mining Development Minister Winston Chitando also met with their Qatar counterparts, with Cde Chinamasa expressing confidence that the visit marks the birth of new relations between Zimbabwe and Qatar.

“I have already had a meeting with my counterpart here, so is Minister Shiri and Minister Chitando. These are first contacts and I am hopeful that they will develop into full blown economic relations. It is too early to talk about concrete figures, remember these are our first contacts with Qatar, none of us here have been to Qatar and you cannot conclude these things in one day. What is important is that as soon as we arrived here, we have had meetings, the President has had meetings with the Emir and we are going to have further meetings and I am very hopeful about our engagement with Qatar,” said Minister Chinamasa, who signed the MOU on behalf of Zimbabwe.

“We have had good discussions here. They have an appetite for energy resources which we have back home and they have an entity called Mining Investment Corporation which focuses on mining investments in Africa, among other places, so I am meeting them again and it is looking good,” Minister Chitando said.  

President Mnangagwa is in Qatar at the invitation of the Emir, Sheik Tamim Bin Hamad.