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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
08DOHA781 2008-11-05 07:52:00 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Doha
Cable title:  

QATAR'S INTEREST IN BILATERAL TAX TREATY

Tags:   EFIN BTIO ECIN ECON EINV QA 
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VZCZCXYZ0006
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHDO #0781 3100752
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 050752Z NOV 08
FM AMEMBASSY DOHA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 8383
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
INFO RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
					  UNCLAS DOHA 000781 

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

TREASURY FOR D/S KIMMITT, A/S SOLOMON

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EFIN BTIO ECIN ECON EINV QA
SUBJECT: QATAR'S INTEREST IN BILATERAL TAX TREATY

REF: A. DOHA 151

B. DOHA 590



1. (SBU) During a meeting with Finance and Economy Minister
Yousef Hussain Kamal (septel), Deputy Treasury Secretary
Robert Kimmitt inquired about a recent diplomatic note from
the Qatari embassy in Washington to the Treasury Department
indicating Qatar's interest in negotiating a bilateral tax
treaty. Kamal said the double taxation issue is "a long
story" and Qatar would be happy to send or receive a team to
reopen discussions on the issue. He added that Qatar
believes such treaties encourage investment. Qatar has such
treaties with most countries, though not with the U.S., even
though 70 percent of Qatar's foreign direct investment (FDI)
is from America, according to Kamal. Deputy Secretary
Kimmitt responded by pledging to look into the issue, noting
that the USG has limited resources to negotiate treaties and
therefore has certain core requirements that would need to be
addressed following consultation with U.S. companies to
ensure that the proposed treaty would, in fact, address
specific problems. He also noted that expanded information
exchange is required in all new treaties.



2. (SBU) Comment: Qatar has signed a number of bilateral tax
treaties in recent months, usually as part of high-level
visits by foreign leaders to Doha. Post is unaware of any
specific U.S. business concerns on double taxation or other
tax issues, although U.S. energy firms have told us of Qatar
Petroleum's concern over the U.S. tax treatment of its
liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports and the receiving
terminal being built in Texas (see reftels). Qatar has
recently signaled interest in a number of bilateral economic
initiatives, including a Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT)
but forward movement has thus far been inhibited by the
disorganization of Qatar's ministries and over-extended key
employees. Post will consult with local U.S. business
contacts on any specific tax concerns and relay any
substantive feedback to State, Commerce, and Treasury.



3. (U) Deputy Secretary Kimmitt has cleared this message.

LeBaron