Qatar’s share of global GDP is set to double to around 0.4% with an expected population of 4.3mn by 2030, according to Economist Intelligence Unit. The country accounted for about 0.2% of the global GDP in 2010.
Qatar’s population stood at 1,836,676 in December, Qatar Statistics Authority (QSA) data shows.
EIU said Qatar’s real economic growth will remain high, averaging 5.7% in 2012-30, with “potential bursts of high growth” if further gas export projects are approved by the government after its moratorium on new deals expires.
However, real economic growth is unlikely to come near to the rapid rates generated by the huge gas industrialisation programme in recent years.
“Diversification and the expansion of the services sector, funded by the state’s hydrocarbons wealth, will provide opportunities for growth and the government will focus on economic diversification,” EIU said.
Qatar’s expenditure will continue to rise, with projects related to the 2022 football World Cup beginning during the forecast period, but increased hydrocarbons production will ensure that the fiscal account remains in surplus.
“With the expansion of LNG output largely complete for now, we expect real GDP growth to slow to a still robust 5.7% a year on average in 2013-17. Inflation is expected to rise steadily over the forecast period, from an average of 1.9% in 2012 to 5% in 2016-17, as work on World Cup-related projects intensifies,” EIU said.
Recently, Qatar Petroleum announced that the Barzan Gas project, dedicated to supplying domestic industry, is 50% complete. The first train will come on stream in 2014 and the second train in 2015, supplying 1.4bn cu ft a day.
Barzan is expected to equip utilities with the capacity to meet the burgeoning demand for electricity and water.
Qatar’s overall score in the business environment rankings has increased in the forecast period (2012-16), EIU said.
Eight of the 12 business environment categories registered improvements, as Qatar’s economy maintains its hydrocarbons-led growth and the domestic political environment remains stable despite upheavals in other parts of the region.
Qatar’s lowest score remains in policy towards private enterprise and competition because of entrenched local business interests in some sectors.
“Qatar’s overall score benefits from the steady expansion of the country’s infrastructure, underpinned by ease of access to external financing—reflecting, in turn, the country’s high credit rating. The country’s political stability, political effectiveness and policy towards foreign investment are among the best in the region, and the country’s corporate tax rate is one of the lowest in the world,” EIU said.
Source: Caye Global News, Gulf Times
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