Qatar has signed a five-billion-euro ($5.9 billion) contract with Italy for seven warships.
“We have signed a contract on behalf of the Qatari navy to acquire seven warships from Italy for five billion euros ($5.9 billion),” foreign minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani said at a Doha press conference with his visiting Italian counterpart Angelino Alfano.
The two ministers also say they discussed the ongoing crisis between Qatar and four Arab states that cut ties with it eight weeks ago. Earlier this week, the quartet countries of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain said they would be open to dialogue with Qatar if it accepts their demands to change its policies in the region first.
The agreement was signed in the midst of a nearly two-month diplomatic crisis with neighbouring Saudi Arabia and its allies.
While it was not announced which Italian company would build the warships, it is likey to be Fincantieri which builds several types of warships for the Italian Navy and international customers.
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