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Saturday, September 18, 2021

Qatar, Jordan step towards mutual visa exemption

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Doha and Amman share strong bilateral relations and at least 60,000 Jordanians working in various sectors in Qatar.

The cabinet has approved a draft agreement on a mutual exemption of visas between Qatar and Jordan for holders of diplomatic and special passports, the Gulf state’s news agency [QNA] reported on Wednesday.

The Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz Al-Thani chaired the cabinet’s regular meeting at the Amiri Diwan on Wednesday.

Currently, holders of the Qatari passport traveling to Jordan require a visa that can be obtained on arrival, free of charge.

Jordanians travelling to Doha for leisure must apply for a tourist visa through Qatar’s visa service and pay a fee of QAR 100 for a tourist visa.

While there have been no further details regarding the draft agreement, the move would provide easier travel between the two states as authorities continue to work on bolstering ties.

Qatar-Jordan bilateral ties

At least 60,000 Jordanians working in various sectors in Doha including health, education, finance, hospitality, and information technology.

Although Qatar and Jordan have shared strong bilateral relations since as far back as 1972, Amman and Doha have taken steps in recent months to work more closely.

In July, Qatar Charity and Jordan signed an agreement on to provide Amman with a QAR 10 million [$2,746,499] grant to support its vaccination efforts. The grant aimed at helping Jordan vaccinate the “largest” number of residents on its land, while also vaccinating Syrian refugees present in the country.

Qatar Fund injects $6.7m into Jordan’s education sector

 

Last year, Qatar’s Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani offered to provide 10,000 jobs for Jordanians during his visit to Amman. The Qatari leader also pledged $30 million in assistance to the Jordan military pension fund.

Since the start of the year, Qatari investments in Jordan have exceeded $4.5 billion in all sectors, including $550 million in private sector investments.

Of those investments, $950 million is equity in companies listed on the Amman Stock Exchange, the deputy chairman of the Qatari-Jordanian Business Council at the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry Khalifa Al Maslamani said.

Jordan’s exports from Doha’s private sector to Jordan also reached $36 million last year.

The two countries have also cooperated in the military field.

In 2019, King Abdullah met with Qatari Defence Minister Khalid bin Mohammed Al-Attiyah to sign bilateral cooperation agreements between Doha and Amman’s armed forces.

Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani was also in Amman in August, where he met with King Abdullah II bin Al-Hussein and Jordan’s foreign minister Ayman Safadi.


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