Qatar-Cuba Relations

Both the State of Qatar and the Republic of Cuba enjoy strong bilateral relations at the political, economic and investment levels and in other areas. On the political side, the two countries are keen to coordinate between them in international forums, where they share a common position on many issues of the international agenda in support of international peace and security. On the economic front, the two countries seek to develop economic ties more effectively in sectors of mutual interest such as health, tourism and investment. The relations between the two countries are based on the excellence friendship between the two leaders of the countries, His Highness the Amir Father Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani (may Allah protect him) and the late leader Fidel Castro Ruz, which is being followed by the current leaders of the countries, His Highness the Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani (may Allah protect him) and President Raul Castro. With the visit of His Highness the Emir to Cuba on 23 November 2015, the relations between the two countries gained new momentum and is now in a distinct phase.

The most important bilateral visits:

  • The Amir Father visited Cuba three times (2000/2001/2008):
  • The late leader of Cuba, Fdiel Castro visited Qatar in 2001.
  • From 2008 to 2011 there was  exchange of high level visits between the two sides
  • In December 2010, Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim Al Thani, Prime Minister and Foreign Minister then, paid a special visit to Havana, and had some meetings with Cuban authorities where he was received by His Excellency Mr. Jose Ramon Machado, First Vice President of the Republic at that time, and HE Mr. Rodrigo Mlmerca, minister of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment. With the occasion of the opening of Dukhan Hospital on 10.01.2012, an invitation was sent to His Excellency the President of Cuba, Raul Castro, but due to work commitments he apologized and he appointed the Minister of Health, Roberto Morales Ojeda, to represent him.
  • Since 2012 there were no exchange of visits, till the visit by HE Mr. / Ali Shareef Al Emadi, Qatar's Minister of Finance to Cuba in mid-October 2015.
  • On November 23, 2015 His Highness the Emir - may God protect him – paid a historical visit to Cuba, and the outcome was the signature of agreements in many fields.
  • On November 26, 2016 His Highness the Amir Father Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani (may Allah protect him) visited Cuba to participate in the funeral ceremony of leader Fidel Castro Ruz.


The Signed Bilateral Agreements and the Agreements´ Proposal in negotiations phase:

There are 17 cooperation agreement - old and new – that have been signed between the two countries. They are as follow:

  • Economic, trade and technical cooperation agreement, in Havana, in 14/09/2000.
  • Agreement on the Avoidance of Double Taxation, in Havana, in 07/11/2006.
  • Cooperation Agreement of Chambers of Commerce, in Doha, in 07/10/2002.
  • Cooperation Agreement (commercial) in the health field, in Havana, in 14/09/2000.
  • Cooperation Agreement between Qatar News Agency / QNA and PL News Agency, in Doha, in October 2002.
  • Cooperation Agreement between Qatar News Agency / QNA news agency Cuban / AIN, in Havana, in 19/11/2003.
  • Cultural Cooperation Agreement (pending of renovation), in Havana, in 02/04/2003.
  • A memorandum of understanding between the two Foreign Ministries for political consultations.
  • Sports Cooperation Agreement (between the Cuban Olympic Committee and Qatar National Olympic Committee), in Havana, in 23/11/2015.
  • Educational and scientific cooperation agreement, in Havana, in 07/11/2006.
  • Cooperation Agreement in the application of customs legislation, in Havana, in 07/11/2006.
  • Cooperation Agreement between the Radio and Television Cuban Institute and the Qatar General Broadcasting and Television Corporation, in Havana, in 07/11/2006.
  • Agreement on Air Transport, in Havana, in 07/11/2006.
Within the framework of a visit of His Highness the Emir (may God protect him) to Cuba on November 23, 2015, four agreements were signed:
  • Memorandum of Understanding in the field of investment,  between the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Trade and the Qatar investment Authority.
  • A cooperation agreement to abolish visa requirements for the diplomatic and special and service passports holders of the two countries (entered into force on 03.28.2016).
  • Memorandum of Understanding in the field of air services.
  • A memorandum of understanding for cooperation in the field of sports (between the Ministry of Culture, Sports in the State of Qatar and the National Institute of Sport and Physical Education and Recreation, of the Republic of Cuba).

There are also 12 proposal of agreements in phase of negotiation: 

  • Agreement on Air Transport (shown to be renegotiated).
  • Convention on the encouragement and mutual protection of investments (waiting for the new version of the Cuban side).
  • Project to Combat Trafficking Convention on the illicit narcotic drugs and mental distortions.
  • Agreement on Cultural Cooperation (presented for renovation).
  • Agreement Project for the regulation of the use of Cuban workers in Qatar.
  • Agreement Project to encourage foreign investment.
  • Draft agreement on cooperation between the University of Havana and the University of Qatar.
  • Draft agreement on maritime transport.
  • Draft agreement on cooperation in the legal field.
  • Legal Cooperation Project in Criminal Matters.
  • Medical cooperation project between the Qatari Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Health in Cuba.
  • A new Supplement draft to amend the Supplement No. 3 of the Convention on medical services.


Media Materials:

Cuba has many print and non-printed media, for example there are at least 20 newspapers, including official and non-official, many of which are issued at the provincial level, and at least 13 television channels, many of which also exist at the provincial level, there are at least 16 radio channels, and in addition there are many scientific, cultural and sports magazines, both printed and on the Internet.

One of the most important objectives of the Embassy of the State of Qatar in Havana, Cuba, is to focus on the media and interact with various media agencies to highlight the role of the mission in reversing a positive and complete image of the state.

From this point of view, several interviews with the Cuban media took place with HE the Ambassador and it approached issues as the role of the Embassy as a link between the State of Qatar and Cuba, the history of bilateral relations, economic, political and cultural issues and cooperation in various sectors such as health, tourism and cultural aspects, the exchange of visits and bilateral agreements and the future of relations between the two countries. 

These press interviews were as follows:

  •  Seminario Opciones, the interview was conducted by Mr. Hidalberto López Blanche, on the 25th of August 2016.
  • On Cuba electronic magazine, the interview was conducted by Monica Rivero on the 27th of September 2016.
  • The  Cuban TV channel "Cubavisión", and the interview was conducted by Anieris Borja, on October 1st, 2016
  • Radio Havana Ronda, and the interview was conducted by Arcenio Rodriguez, on the 15th of December 2016.