Qatar to spend $12.5bn on housing and infrastructure…

To cater to the growing population ahead of FIFA World Cup 2022, $12.5bn (QR45.52bn) is due to be spent on creating new housing in Qatar.

Due to be spent over the next seven years, the amount will also cover the basic infrastructure needed to create and support the massive housing stocks, according to Minister of Economy and Commerce Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim bin Mohamed Al Thani.

The minister was part of the Qatari delegation that accompanied the Emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, on his official visit to Japan. Addressing members of the Japanese corporate world, Sheikh Ahmed reiterated Qatar’s resolve to complete all 2022-related projects, despite the falling oil prices, Zawya reports.

Sheikh Ahmed said Japanese businesses and investors were welcome to take part in the development projects related to the World Cup.

He stressed: “The projects linked to 2022 are stimulants for the Qatari economy and that’s why the World Cup fixture is so important for us. Qatar is committed to completing all 2022-linked projects in time. None of these projects will be delayed.”

The total value of these projects is an impressive $200bn, of which nearly a fourth ($45bn) is being spent on Lusail City alone.

Lusail City would house some 450,000 people. The development includes a stadium being built there that will host the opening and closing ceremonies and the final match of the 2022 tournament.

According to the minister $3bn is being spent on building stadiums..

Along with various agreements signed during the meeting – including one on cooperation between Qatar University and a number of Japanese educational institutions – at least three workshops were held as part of the meeting.

The minister highlighted Qatar’s economic diversification plans and said efforts in this regard were bearing fruit as the non-hydrocarbons sector had a share of almost 50% in the country’s economy, up from 2013, when its share in the GDP was 46%.

Along with the non-hydrocarbon sector, the private sector’s contribution to the economy is also rising rapidly as evidenced by its increasing share in the GDP, from $33bn in 2009 to $58bn in 2013.

Qatar’s trade surplus has risen immensely, from $23bn in 2009 to $110bn in 2013, owing to fast-expanding exports, which amounted to $137bn in 2013.

Japan is one of Qatar’s major trade partners and remains the largest importer of Qatari oil and gas.

The total value of Qatar’s exports to Japan in 2013 was $40bn, while the trade volume between the two countries totalled $42bn during the year. Vehicle imports totalled $2bn in 2014, according to the minister.