The latest development comes as Doha and Riyadh’s ties continue to develop following the signing of the Al-Ula Declaration last year.
Qatar and Saudi Arabia discussed ways to boost their bilateral trade as ties continue to develop following GCC rapprochement, the kingdom’s news agency (SPA) reported on Friday.
In a meeting in Riyadh, members of the Saudi-Qatari business council noted ties between the two are “at the highest level”.
Hamad Al-Shuwaier, Chairman of the Saudi Qatari business council, said the council is working on a draft study to analyse economic development.
The Saudi official said the council has also been planning more innovative programmes and initiatives to further increase investment.
According to Al-Shuwaier, trade exchange between the neighbouring countries in the first half of this year reached 802 million Saudi Riyals.
Qatar-Saudi Arabia ties
The latest development comes as Qatar and Saudi Arabia continue to develop relations following the signing of the Al-Ula Declaration last year.
The historic accord ended the 2017 GCC crisis, which saw Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt sever diplomatic ties with Qatar.
The quartet had imposed an illegal air, land and sea blockade on Doha over claims that it supported terrorism. Qatar has rejected and vehemently dismissed those claims as baseless.
Ties between Qatar and Saudi Arabia developed at a greater speed in comparison to other members of the quartet, with mutual visits seen between officials of the two countries.
In an interview with the Atlantic this year, Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, also known as MBS, lauded the “amazing” relations.
“Today we have unbelievable, amazing relations with Qatar. Sheikh Tamim [is] an amazing person, an amazing leader. Same goes for the other GCC leaders. Our aim and focus is on how to build a great future. We are very, very close. And it’s like, we are better than ever in history,” he said.
In December last year, MBS was in Qatar on his first visit to the country since the 2017 GCC crisis. The visit was followed with a trip to the neighbouring kingdom by Sheikh Tamim, who attended the 42nd GCC summit.
Sheikh Tamim also visited Saudi Arabia in July for a GCC+3 Summit, which saw the attendance of US President Joe Biden.
Major progress between the two countries was also seen in November last year, when Qatar’s border with Saudi Arabia was moved further towards the kingdom, expanding the peninsula’s geographical boundaries.
When asked about the 2017 GCC crisis by French media outlet Le Point, the Qatari leader said he does “not want to talk about the past”.
“We have entered a new phase; things are moving in the right direction. We recognise that sometimes, we disagree. We are preparing for the future of this group of countries, the Gulf Cooperation Council, which is essential for unlocking the potential of young people throughout the region,” said amir Tamim last month.