Erdogan ends Qatar visit without any significant assistance announced for Turkey

Dec 8, 2021: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan ended his visit to Qatar without a major deal, nor did he give any indication that Doha would promote direct financial aid as Turkey suffers from a historic currency crash and rising inflation.

An official statement meanwhile, issued Tuesday said President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani had signed 15 agreements in areas ranging from media to disaster management and “more ways to promote economic ties and financial harmony.”

The joint statement said that Qatar had agreed to extend the currency exchange agreement with Turkey, which Doha had tripled to $15 billion last year. The agreement is designed to boost Turkey’s foreign reserves and strengthen the lira. The statement did not mention any increase in direct funding.

However, in a news briefing on Monday, Turkish Foreign Minister said that Ankara has no plans to ask Doha for financial assistance, while his Qatari counterpart said that Doha is looking for emerging opportunities created by Turkey’s economic challenges.

Qatar has strong ties with Turkey which supported Doha when Saudi Arabia and three other Arab states, including the United Arab Emirates, imposed an embargo on Qatar in mid-2017 in a row that was resolved last January.

The boycotting states had objected to a non-Arab Turkish military base in Qatar, which included other points of contention, including regional conflicts and armed groups. Before leaving for Doha, Erdogan met with Turkish troops at the base.

“We do not separate the security and stability of Qatar from that of our own country,” Erdogan said in a speech, mentioning Doha’s contributions to “Turkey’s investment, employment, production and export-oriented growth”.

Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have moved to improve relations with Ankara following Erdogan’s charming offesnive, although Abu Dhabi has taken more concrete steps than Riyadh.

The UAE’s de facto ruler visited Turkey last month to sign a multi-billion dollar investment agreement.

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