Ethiopia’s Ambassador to Qatar, HE Feisel Aliyi Abrahim, underscored that the relationship between Qatar and Ethiopia stems from mutual respect, strong historical ties and shared interests across multiple platforms.
During a recent media roundtable, the ambassador said that the two countries have several potential investment areas, particularly in Ethiopia – which could be a desirable destination for Qatari investors and tourists. He revealed that Qatar was funding the construction of a kidney hospital in Addis Ababa under the Qatar Fund for Development.
“We have excellent relations with Qatar due to historical and religious ties. We also had an exchange of high-level leaders, signed nearly 13 agreements – some of which are being processed and some areas are already operational” , said Ambassador Abrahim.
He shared that the two countries agreed to establish a joint ministerial commission to oversee bilateral relations. In addition, there is an agreement to work regionally and internationally. There are currently over 30,000 Ethiopian residents in Qatar. The ambassador who took office last year is no stranger to diplomacy, having served in Ethiopia’s foreign ministry and embassy in Qatar. He said his experience in Qatar would allow him to identify more areas of cooperation.
“Qatar is a country I know, and there are areas that the two countries can cooperate and capitalize on for our benefit. We organize a political consultation every two years, which reviews commitments in the areas of economic, political, social and other cooperation and solicits new commitments.
“My priority is to strengthen existing bilateral and multilateral cooperation, monitor the implementation of existing bilateral agreements and work to strengthen people-to-people relations between the two parties.”
Abrahim also noted that under the current Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed, the Ethiopian economy is now open to foreign investment, especially with the launch of the Dire Dawa Free Trade Zone, officially inaugurated last month. He said Qatari investors could take advantage of the measure, which allows full ownership of companies, to explore opportunities in tourism, agriculture, technology and manufacturing.
“We strengthen the local economy by making it competent to absorb inward investment. Ethiopia used to be a closed country economically, but now we have opened up to foreign businesses. Recently, the Prime Minister declared the country open to foreign companies in the financial sector,” he added.
According to Abrahim, Ethiopia is a thriving hub as it is home to several international and regional agencies, citing Addis Ababa as an example. He pointed out that Ethiopia is keen to develop its market, especially in tourism, with plans to make it a top destination for tourists from Qatari citizens and residents – Qatar Airways and Ethiopia Airlines offer travel options for commuters .