COME Sunday, it’s time to celebrate our National Day. History has chronicled it was on December 18, 1878, that Sheikh Jassim bin Mohammed Al Thani, founder of the modern state of Qatar, succeeded in rallying the different tribes for a common cause, building a sense of belonging and loyalty among them. It’s one of our most significant days because without unity we couldn’t have reached where we’re today. And it’s that unity we celebrate every year.
Festivities have already started at many places and an array of events, showcasing Qatar’s history and development over centuries, are lined up for the weekend. Our journey from a tiny nation with pearl trading as its main source of income to the largest exporter of liquefied natural gas has been an amazing one. Qatar is now one of the most-favoured destinations for the world’s top sports stars and a popular conference venue.
This hasn’t been achieved without any sacrifice or hard work. Our leaders have shown tremendous commitment towards achieving their goals and planned for the betterment of their future generations. It’s their vision and staunch belief in our nation’s founding principles that’ve taken us forward.
Initiatives like the Qatar National Development Strategy-2016 and Qatar National Vision-2030 have helped drive the country’s overall development, serving as clear roadmaps for the future.
Latest economic, social and human resources development indices place Qatar among the top countries, and plans are afoot to stimulate further growth and thereby guarantee sustainability and stability in the years to come.
One of the greatest milestones achieved by our leaders is the establishment of Qatar as a global sports hub. The world-class infrastructure, which can host any showpiece event, and long list of international competitions, across various disciplines, which we host annually, have boosted our national identity. It also helped us achieve our goal of becoming a leading nation in bringing the world together through sustainable sports development.
This National Day will be a significant one for non-Qataris too because a new law abolishing the much-criticised Kafala (sponsorship) system came into effect on Tuesday, guaranteeing more protection to the migrant workforce in the country.
My hearty congratulations to the Emir HH Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, government and all my fellow-Qataris. I wish you all a Happy National Day in advance.