Qatar's generosity towards Egypt is widely seen by non-Islamist Egyptians as the Gulf state seeking to establish a foothold in countries that have been swept by Arab Spring revolts.
Qatar was an anathema to former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, who had made no secret of his contempt for the super-rich state and what he saw as its propaganda tool, Al Jazeera television.
But all that changed with the fall of the Mubarak regime in 2011 and the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood as Egypt's most powerful political group.
Qatar has since poured billions of dollars into Egypt, mostly as bonds to bolster the country's fast-dwindling coffers. Top Qatari officials, from the emir down to the head of his intelligence agency and the powerful prime minister, have been frequent visitors to Cairo in recent months.
On the Egyptian side, the Brotherhood, rather than the foreign ministry, controls the country's dealings with Qatar. Khairat El Shater, a wealthy businessman and arguably the Brotherhood's most powerful figure who was disqualified from running in the country's 2012 election for president, has been the regime's point man on relations with Qatar, frequently flying there on unannounced visits.
Top Qatari officials say they are helping Egypt because they do not want to see the country's economy continue to sink. (The National)