Qatar launched the Qatar UK 2013 initiative at the National day celebrations on 4 December at Claridges in London.

Speaking about the successful “Japan Qatar 2012” year, Minister of Culture, Dr Hamad Bin Abdulaziz Al Kawari, highlighted upcoming cultural events which would celebrating the long-standing relationship between the two countries, “Qatar UK 2013” aims to forge new ties and support existing partnerships in education, sport, creative industries and science, while promoting an awareness and appreciation of each country’s culture, achievements, and heritage.

The programme has been developed in a partnership between Qatar Museums Authority, Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, the British Council and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Participating Qatari organisations include the Museum of Islamic Art Doha, the Arab Museum of Modern Art Doha – MATHAF, the Doha Film Institute and the Cultural Village Foundation, Katara.

The curtain was raised in Doha on 6 December 2012, with the opening at the Cultural Village Foundation, Katara of an exhibition entitled “Encounter: The Royal Academy in the Middle East”.