Qatar in bid for Oman base

Qatar Navigation, a shipping and logistics company based in Doha, confirmed they were shifting its regional trans-shipment hub from Dubai to the Omani port of Sohar after a diplomatic crisis in the region disrupted Qatar's trade.

Milaha is creating a warehousing and logistics operation at Sohar and is exploring other opportunities to expand in that country, the company said on Monday.

The actions taken suggests Qatar is making long-term preparations to cope with sanctions imposed by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt, which cut diplomatic and transport ties in June with accusations of the country backing terrorism.

The sanctions closed Saudi Arabia's land border with Qatar and also ended direct shipping links between Doha and Dubai's Jebel Ali port, the region's main trans-shipment centre.

As a result, Qatar's imports shrank by more than a third in June and some of its exports, excluding shipments of liquefied natural gas (LNG), were delayed.

In the days after the crisis erupted, shippers including Milaha developed new routes to Qatar via Oman, which has stayed neutral in the dispute, and other countries. Milaha's statement on Monday indicated it was now making long-term arrangements to handle Qatar's trade without relying on Jebel Ali.

There still hasn’t been any resolve between the Middle East companies.

Qatar denies that it supports terrorism and there has been no clear sign of a resolution to the diplomatic dispute, with one senior UAE official suggesting Doha could remain isolated for years.

Source used: Reuters 

A senior United Arab Emirates (UAE) official said in June that Qatar's powerful Arab neighbours could continue to isolate it "for years" if it did not change course in its policy of supporting extremists and jihadist groups.

Speaking to a small group of reporters in Paris, Anwar Gargash, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, said a list of grievances Arab nations had with Qatar would be completed in the next few days and that Doha needed to move beyond its state of "denial".

"The Kuwaiti mediation will be very useful and there will be demands coming. Qatar will realise that this is a new state of affairs and isolation can last years," Gargash said.

"If they want to be isolated because of their perverted view of what their political role is then let them be isolated," Reuters reported. 

 

 

 

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