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Mayor Cantrell Travels to Doha, Qatar with the Embassy of Qatar’s U.S. Mayors Delegation to Discuss Education, Climate Change and Economics

NEW ORLEANS — Today, Mayor LaToya Cantrell traveled to Doha, Qatar, joining the Embassy of Qatar’s U.S. Mayors Delegation and participating in the Qatar Economic Forum, Powered by Bloomberg. During her visit, she will be accompanied by mayors from the states of Michigan and Florida and will engage in various meetings with both U.S. and Qatari officials.

Mayor Cantrell will meet with Timmy Davis, the U.S. Ambassador to the State of Qatar. As a native of New Orleans, Ambassador Davis recognizes firsthand the importance of both the socioeconomic connections between our nations and the mutual benefits of the bond shared between New Orleans and Qatar. He has played a pivotal role in fostering cultural exchange by introducing New Orleans traditions to Qatar, notably through hosting the country’s first Mardi Gras celebration last year.

Most notably, Qatar’s significant support in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina contributed to the reconstruction and rejuvenation of the city, resulting in the restoration of our tourism economy and the advancement of our higher education institutions. Under the leadership of former Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani, Qatar donated nearly $100 million for recovery and infrastructure improvements in New Orleans through the Qatar Katrina Fund.

Qatar’s investment in education and healthcare in New Orleans has been substantial, providing state-of-the-art facilities, equipment and financial support. Xavier University received $12.5 million for facility expansion, resulting in the establishment of the Xavier University’s Qatar Pharmacy Pavilion, as well as $5 million for scholarships. Tulane University Community Health Center received $5 million to enhance low-cost quality healthcare for residents, along with an additional $10 million for scholarships. Qatar’s commitment to education is also demonstrated through their Education City, an initiative by non-profit Qatar Foundation, that is a one-of-a-kind international campus hosting branches of some of the world’s leading educational institutes, including six U.S. universities. Mayor Cantrell will visit the seven-square mile campus while there to learn more about this innovative approach to higher education.

She will attend a meeting with His Excellency Dr. Abdulla bin Abdulaziz, Minister of Environment and Climate Change. When it comes to climate change, Qatar and the City of New Orleans are grappling with the impacts of rising sea levels, excessive rainfall and the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Their region recently experienced the most substantial rainfall seen since 1949, leading to unprecedented flooding. New Orleans and Qatar will share expertise and resources on disaster preparedness, urban resilience, sustainable infrastructure development and equitable energy transition to mitigate the impacts of such events, fostering mutual resilience.

She will also attend the Opening Session of the 4th Qatar Economic Forum, Powered by Bloomberg. This session will explore issues that drive global boardroom conversations and will highlight the Gulf’s rising prominence as the region works to enhance their global influence, diversify economies and gain international prominence. As Qatar hosted the previous FIFA World Cup in 2022, and the U.S. is set to co-host the next World Cup in 2026 and New Orleans is preparing to host Super Bowl LIX in 2025, we will share best practices on how to capitalize on these major events to the benefit of our local economies.

Upon her return, Mayor Cantrell will attend a ribbon cutting for the New Orleans Police Department’s relocation of their new headquarters and will give remarks at the State of the Utility with Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans leadership.


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