What are the banks found in Qatar

Qatar, the blockade, VW and Deutsche Bank

You have to ask yourself, of course, what Waldi is doing here in the middle of the desert - the little dachshund, the mascot of the Olympic Games in Munich 1972. The blue-green animal was supposed to advertise Germany in the world one day, but for an economically powerful one politically completely cautious Germany.

And Retro-Waldi, the dog with bite resistance, is not alone: ​​VW Beetles have infiltrated the Al Riwaq Gallery in Doha, vintage cars that demonstrate how the design of German automobiles has changed over the decades, in short: as if from one Idea becomes form.

German design - this is a branch of industry that is yet to take on its full importance, says Michael Maurer, Head of Group Design at Volkswagen and Head of the Design Department at Porsche. Maurer stands a little lost in the 3500 square meter exhibition hall on Doha Bay.

"It's only now getting exciting in terms of design. There are bigger changes than in the last 20 years. Because when the electric car comes, the big hardware parts for the engine will disappear. Then there will be a car that looks completely different. " It goes without saying that design teams all over the world are tinkering with it.

Industrial designer Stefan Diez in conversation with a Qatari prospect - the exhibition "Driven by German Design" attracted a lot of attention

"Where can I buy this?"

There is a reason that all the cars from the past can now be seen in Qatar, as well as the seating furniture or the Leica models that have long been world leaders. Or the Adidas shoes from 1954 and the soccer shoes of the future, which are made to measure by a computer using a 3-D process.

"Driven by German Design" is the name of the exhibition that was curated by the museum manager Martin Roth and is being presented by Volkswagen on the occasion of the German-Qatari year of culture - at the same time as a Deutsche Bank show ("German Encounters") showing over a hundred paintings from their Brought art collection to the desert peninsula.

"There has not been a design exhibition like this in Germany for decades," says the renowned industrial designer Stefan Diez. "It's crazy that a car company and Qatar have to come together first to realize such an overview exhibition." Especially since nobody in Germany gets to see them, at least for the time being.

In Qatar, the overview show over 70 years of German design is a hit. Many Arab families came on the opening day. Some asked where you can buy the objects shown. Buying is a sport in Doha, the differences between an art exhibition and an art market are not common knowledge.

See the crisis as an opportunity!

The German appearance comes at a time that is not easy for Qatar. At the beginning of June, Qatar's neighbors - Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and also Egypt - imposed a blockade on Qatar for political reasons but with serious economic consequences. The isolation of Qatar includes, among other things, the demand to shut down the Al Jazeera channel, which has 300 million viewers annually in the Arab world.

The sudden political tightening and the economic sanctions were also topics at a banquet attended by ex-Federal President Christian Wulff, the CEO of Volkswagen AG, Matthias Müller, and Paul Achleitner, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Deutsche Bank.

Ex-Federal President Christian Wulff (center) was also part of the German delegation. Right in the picture: Sheika Mayassa.

Under the dome of the fantastic Museum of Islamic Art, Sheikha Mayassa, the sister of the Emir Temim bin Hamad al-Thani, expressed her gratitude: "At the moment there is a political blockade that our neighbors have imposed on us. So I'm all the more happy about it Immediate German reaction and support. Qatar will never forget the German response to the current situation, so I thank you within the framework of the government of Qatar. "

Sheikha Mayassa is a powerful player in the art world. Forbes ranks her among the 100 Most Influential Women in the World. She spends a billion dollars on the art market every year.

The response speech by Paul Achleitner on behalf of Deutsche Bank is also remarkable for the German-Qatari year of culture: "We want to express our support and our sympathy for the residents of Qatar in this very difficult situation in which we find ourselves. Volkswagen, Deutsche Bank and Qatar is also going through a difficult time. But we all see crises as a positive opportunity to move forward and seize new opportunities. "

Crisis? What crisis?

Open words - especially since Achleitner also mentions the difficulties of his company and those of Volkswagen that need to be overcome. In any case, Qatar will not let itself be shaken by the blockade of its neighbors and is doing business as usual. Al Jazeera continues to send unmoved, Qatar Airways is still flying around the globe. Some even believe that in the end, Saudi Arabia will emerge as the loser from the dispute.

The construction of the World Cup stadiums will also continue. Within a very short time, the country has built a new infrastructure, found new ports and transport routes for the gas export, on which it lives. Apparently, Qatar cannot be brought to its knees that easily.

Germany and Qatar are closely intertwined economically

The German-Qatari cultural year, although decided long before the blockade, now acts like an address of solidarity. Friedhelm Hütte, head of the art department at Deutsche Bank, has brought his most beautiful Polkes, Baselitz 'and Neo Rauchs, which are now on display in the hypothermic Fire Station.

From an economic point of view, Germany and Qatar have moved closer to each other than you might think. The emirate already owns almost 15 percent of Volkswagen and eight percent of Deutsche Bank. Porsche, the solar system manufacturer Solarworld and the construction company Hochtief also have experience with Qatari investors. According to the Chamber of Commerce, 64 German companies have a branch in Doha.