The inaugural Qatar-US Strategic Dialogue delivers positive outcomes

30 January 2018

On 30 January 2018, the inaugural Qatar-US Strategic Dialogue took place at the US State Department in Washington DC. It marked an important moment in the strategic relationship between the two countries.

The event was attended by senior Qatari and US officials, including:

  • His Excellency Dr Khalid bin Mohamed Al Attiyah, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Defence Affairs
  • His Excellency Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs
  • Rex Tillerson, US Secretary of State
  • Jim Mattis, US Secretary of Defence

The Qatar-US Strategic Dialogue built on the long history of cooperation and mutual respect between the two countries. Diplomatic relations between Qatar and the US were established in 1972, when Qatar’s first diplomatic mission in Washington DC opened. Since then, Qatar-US relations have continued to strengthen, especially in defence and counterterrorism, and trade and investment.

The Dialogue led to the signing of several agreements and Memorandums of Understanding between the two countries.

In defence and security, a Joint Declaration to enhance security and military cooperation was signed, which included an agreement to expand the United States airbase at Al Udeid in Qatar. A Letter of Intent on cybersecurity cooperation, aiming to combat cybercrime, exchange information and share cybersecurity best practices, was also signed.

In trade and investment, a Letter of Intent in bilateral trade, which aims to strengthen and expand trade cooperation between the two countries in areas of mutual interest, was signed. It was also agreed that Qatar would improve transparency in civil aviation to ensure healthy competition in the global aviation sector while maintaining the Open Skies framework of US international aviation policy. Finally, a Memorandum of Understanding on energy cooperation was signed.

Additional Memorandums of Understanding were signed to combat human trafficking to improve labour practices, and to make the Qatar-US Strategic Dialogue an annual event.