An active group of Canadian expats, hailing from Ottawa, Vancouver, Montreal and all regions of Canada reside in Qatar. Besides the bilateral ties between Qatar and Canada, it is a relationship built on solid people-to-people connections.
There are over 9,000 Canadians living in Qatar and they are present in all sectors of Qatar’s economy, alongside dozens of Canadian institutions that are playing an important role in developing Qatar’s future.
“Canada’s relationship with Qatar is more than just the connection between our governments. Our relationship is built on direct people-to-people connections,” said Ambassador of Canada to Qatar, Stefanie McCollum.
“Canadians and Qataris have been strengthening the bond between our two peoples for decades and these friendships have helped create the links between Canada and Qatar that you see today,” the Ambassador said while addressing an event held recently to celebrate the Canada Day in Qatar.
The event held at St Regis Hotel gathered about 400 Canadians and others residing in Qatar. It showcased the connections between Qatar and Canada.
Minister of Municipality and Environment, H E Abdullah bin Abdulaziz bin Turki Al Subaie; Undersecretary at the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, Dr Ibrahim Al Nuaimi; Chief of Protocol at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Ibrahim Yousif Abdulla Fakhroo; and diplomats from various embassies and other dignitaries were also present at the occasion.
“We’re also here tonight to celebrate and grow the partnerships and friendships between Canada and Qatar that advance our shared prosperity and security interests,” said McCollum.
Different Canadian universities, companies and institutions which are present in Qatar help to enhance the people to people connections.
University of Calgary in Qatar being the only university in Qatar providing a nursing degree contributes hugely to the country’s growing health sector. It currently has over 450 students and 41 Canadian faculty members and is contributing actively to the Qatar’s health and research sector.
College of the North Atlantic-Qatar (CNA-Q), a national technical college offers over 30 diploma programs. College of the North Atlantic is its Canadian Academic partner. Since opening in 2002, CAN-Q has graduated thousands of alumni who are proudly contributing to a knowledge-based economy and making the Qatar National Vision 2030 a reality.
SNC Lavalin, a Canadian company, is global leader in engineering, procurement, construction and facilities management services across various industries. Including subsidiary companies Kentz and Atkins, SNC Lavalin has over 2,000 employees and counts Qatar Petroleum, Msheireb Properties, Qatar Gas and the Ministry of Education and Higher Education as their clients.
Apparel Group represents more than 40 international brands across 150+ stores in leading shopping malls and retail outlets. This includes 33 stores of famous Canadian brands such as Tim Hortons, Aldo, Aldo Accessories, Herschel, La Vie en Rose, Call it Spring, Garage and Ardene with plans to double the presence of its stores by the end of next year.
CAE – Canada is a world leader in providing simulation and modelling technologies to airlines, aircraft manufactures, healthcare specialists and defence customers in Qatar. Friendly Food was established in 1978 and has grown to become one of the largest and most reliable importers and distributors of food items and related products in Qatar.
SDI Marketing, with headquarters in Toronto and its office in Doha since 2010, does experiential and epic events, sports marketing consulting and CSR consulting.
Top Canadian companies also include Bell Helicopter, Bennett Jones Law Firm, Ellis Don Construction, The Look marketing and Terrestrial Energy.
The presence of Canadian Business Council Qatar and Canadian Commercial Corporation also make a huge impact on business development between the two countries as well as people to people contacts.