Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Qatar to undertake $120bn projects by 2020: Sada

SATYENDRA PATHAK

DOHA QATAR is set to surge ahead with $120 billion worth of projects to be undertaken until 2020. Much of the spending on the projects will be met with revenues from oil and gas exports.

“Our energy sector has played a central role in supporting the economy of Qatar. Last year, oil and gas exports accounted for 50 percent of gross domestic product and 70 percent of the government revenues. The government will continue to rely on these revenues in the future as well,” Minister of Energy & Industry HE Mohammad bin Saleh al Sada said in a speech delivered by RasGas Managing Director and Qatar Petroleum Vice-Chairman Hamad Rashid al Mohannadi, at the MEED Qatar Projects 2013 conference, in Doha, on Monday.

Addressing delegates, Qatar Central Bank Governor HE Sheikh Abdullah Saoud al Thani highlighted business and regulatory changes in Qatar that will drive project development and long-term economic gains.

The QCB governor said that he expected the real growth rate in Qatar in 2013 to reach 5.5 percent.

“Preliminary estimates show that Qatar’s GDP at the current prices, grew by 11 percent in 2012 to about QR700 billion,” he said.

The QCB governor explained that the performance of the banking system in the country clearly reflected these facts, with a total increase in commercial bank assets in 2012 rising by 18 percent to around QR817 billion, customer deposits by 26 percent to about QR458 billion and credit facilities during the same period by more than 27 percent to about QR477 billion.

He stated that the Qatar National Vision 2030 envisions achieving a risk-free financial system.

Qatar is experiencing a construction boom, with more than $220 billion projects planned or under way.

Much of the country’s spending is driven by preparations for the 2022 FIFA World Cup, which will require 12 stadiums, 90,000 hotel rooms and the related infrastructure to accommodate over 400,000 fans.

“The first day of Qatar Projects 2013 has been a resounding success.

Already, we have witnessed a number of insightful presentations, giving stakeholders a clearer view of what lies ahead in terms of opportunities and challenges in Qatar’s projects sector,” said Edmund O’ Sullivan, chairman of MEED events, organisers of Qatar Projects 2013.

The second day of the conference features a quantitative and qualitative data appreciation on Qatar and the GCC Project Market, featuring a comprehensive forecast and assessment of the projects market in the region by MEED Insights.

In addition to Qatar Petroleum, Qatar Chamber and the Public Works Authority (Ashghal), Qatar Projects 2013 is being supported by International Bank of Qatar as Platinum sponsor; United Development Company as Strategic Partner; Qatar Islamic Bank and Kharafi National as Gold Sponsors; Mashreq as Silver Sponsor; as well as Qatar Insurance Company, Brookfield Multiplex, Black Cat and Autodesk as bronze sponsors.

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