In the face of sanctions imposed on Qatar by several Gulf countries, Turkey is taking action by establishing a military base in the country and deploying troops there, while accelerating diplomatic efforts regarding the crisis in Qatar. Moreover, Turkey, along with 57 Muslim countries, will discuss the issue in detail at the 33rd Islamic Cooperation Organization's Economic and Commercial Cooperation Committee (COMCEC) meeting, which will take place in Istanbul from Nov. 20-23.
While Turkey prepares to bring the removal of sanctions imposed on Qatar to a vote, it is believed that lobbying activities have already begun under the auspices of the November meeting, according to information obtained from sources close to the subject. Furthermore, member countries will have to abide by the decisions made at the COMCEC meeting, which will commence with a speech from President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Financial sanctions are expected to be imposed on countries that contravene the decisions and it has been emphasized that Turkey will maintain a determined stance regarding the lifting of the sanctions imposed on Qatar, exerting intensive efforts to lift the sanctions at the meeting.
Meanwhile, emphasizing that they will organize the 2nd Expo Turkey Qatar Fair from Jan. 18-20, Hakan Kurt, the Medyacity chairman, said they anticipate seeing growth in business volume to increase two-fold this year. Indicating that 154 firms participated in the fair this year, Kurt said that Medyacity aims to host nearly 200 Turkish firms at the next fair. Moreover, he added that there is a high demand from the food and machinery sector, saying that real estate can easily be sold in Qatar. Kurt emphasized that the importance of Expo Turkey Qatar will increase even more next year.
While Qatar has lost its two major export partners, the United Arabic Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia, trade volume between Turkey and Qatar is expected to exceed $5 billion, according to many officials.
COMCEC, which seeks to address economic problems facing the Islamic nation while contributing to the development efforts of member states, convenes annually in Istanbul at the ministerial level, in October or November, under the Presidency of the president of the Republic of Turkey. Many cooperative programs and projects have been implemented at the COMCEC meeting which has seen 32 sessions held to-date. COMCEC, which is one of the four permanent committees of the Islamic Cooperation Organization (OIC), has a total of 57 member states spread across four continents, as well as five observers.
COMCEC's standing committee was established at the 3rd Islamic Summit Conference held in Mecca in 1981. COMCEC became operational at the 4th Islamic Summit in 1984, with the election of the president of the Republic of Turkey to its chairmanship.