QATAR has set economic diversification the top priority

Dr. Theodore Theodoropoulos, QENERGY CEO
Dr. Theodore Theodoropoulos, QENERGY CEO

Qatar, which has set economic diversification the top priority, has witnessed a varying pattern in the infrastructure sector’s growth as well as its contribution to overall economy during 2006-11 according to Dr. Theodore.

The infrastructure sector contributed 25.1% (or QR39.38bn) to gross domestic product (GDP) of QR156.66bn at 2004 prices in 2006, which then rose to 27.4% (QR50.69bn of QR184.84bn) in 2007 but only to fall to 26.8% (58.37bn of QR217.49bn) in 2008 (report by Qatar Statistics Authority). In 2009, the contribution rose to 29.2% (QR71.03bn of QR243.49bn), which then fell to 27% (QR76.82bn of QR284.23bn) in 2010 and to 26.9% (QR87.16bn of QR324.36bn) in 2011.

The gross value addition of the infrastructure sectors is around 27% of the total economy, which is predominantly hydrocarbon based. The infrastructure sector outgrew the overall economy during 2006-07 and 2008-09 but lagged behind during other periods, according to QE report.

In 2006-07, the infrastructure sector grew 28.72%, while the economy (at 2004 prices) rose 17.99%. It was 15.15% (17.66%) in 2007-08, 21.69% (11.95%) in 2008-09, 8.15% (16.73%) in 2009-10 and 13.46% (14.12%) in 2010-11.

Gross capital formation stood at 42.2% of the GDP (at current prices) in 2006, which then rose to 47.1% in 2007, but only to fall to 41.6% in 2008. Thereafter, it rose to 44.7% in 2009 and then declined to 35.3% in 2010.

“The gross capital formation (GCF), which primarily represents the investment in infrastructure sectors, accounts for more than one-third of the GDP, though the share varies over the years,” said the QSA in QE’s report.

A Bank of America Merrill Lynch report had earlier found that gross fixed capital formation (GFCF) has been running ahead of its long-term average in Qatar and said “as we expect the level of investments to be generally more restrained than in previous years, the GFCF should start reverting gradually to the mean as a proportion of GDP, in line with a recovery in other segments of the economy.”

Qatar’s recently announced budget for 2012-13 shows higher outlay for infrastructure projects as well as health and education in line with the Qatar National Vision 2030 and National Development Strategy 2011-16. Major projects would get an outlay of QR62bn in 2012-13, up 25% on the previous year. This includes provisions for Doha Port, New Doha International Airport, sewage facilities, rail network and urban development in preparation for the FIFA World Cup 2022.

The education sector has been given an outlay of QR22bn, including provisions for research activities; the health sector would get QR14bn and housing has been provided QR7.1billion.

Source: QENERGY Economic Department

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