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2020 to be marked as ‘Qatar-France Year of Culture,' says French Minister

2020 to be marked as ‘Qatar-France Year of Culture,' says French Minister

By QLNews

The friendly relations between Qatar and France have been enriched with a number of agreements signed earlier this week including a security management deal for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.

Now, the announcement of 2020 as the Qatar-France Year of Culture by the French Minister of State for International Trade Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne further testifies the depth of the friendly bond shared by the two nations.

Addressing a press conference at Galeries Lafayette in Katara Cultural Village, the French Minister said a number of programs shining light on the heritage and cultural credentials of the two countries will be organized in Qatar and France under the year of culture, reported Gulf Times.

The year 2020 will be dedicated to French culture, reflected in an array of events such as concerts, exhibitions, and art festivals, in Qatar.

It was said that some special packages would be announced to attract tourists from Qatar to France and vice versa.

“Around 300,000 people from Qatar travelled to Paris in 2018 and from France 42,000 French visited Qatar. Qatar- France Year of Culture will lead to an increase in tourist inflows in both countries. I think we can have 20 percent increase in number of tourists from each side,” Lemoyne is quoted to have said by The Peninsula.

The minister, who claimed France is on top of the list of countries with high yields from tourism, said the country is confident in its tourism sector.

He said 90 million international tourists visited France last year, spending over 57 billion euros in the country.

“We want to retain the tag of number one country in tourism and every possible effort will be taken (to maintain the position),” he mentioned, adding that discussions with high level officials of Qatar National Tourism Council (QNTC) are being carried out to boost tourism ties between Qatar and France.

“We will work with Qatar Airways and QNTC. We want Qatari visitors to go to France and explore its heritage and culture,” he added.

The two countries will be hosting some major sports events, Lemoyne said, which is another area of further collaboration for Qatar and France.

“Sport is a common factor between Qatar and France. Both countries will host very big sports event. Qatar will host football world cup in 2022 while France will host Women’s football world cup this year, rugby world cup in 2023 and Olympic Games in 2024,” he noted, adding that “These big sporting events [present] a unique opportunity to upgrade our infrastructure, in terms of transports, lodging, hospitality, stadiums. I think we have a lot to share in this area,” he added. 

The French Minister was in Doha to participate in the inauguration ceremony of the National Museum of Qatar, which was officially opened to public on Thursday.

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