Qatar GDP projected to hit $230bn

April 20, 2014 - 1:18:48 am

DOHA: Given Qatar’s projected 6-7 percent growth rate for 2014-15, the countries GDP is expected to touch an estimated $230bn in the current fiscal. Going forward, Qatar might emerge as the region’s second largest economy, Al Sharq reported.

Abdullah Al Khater, a local economist told the daily: “Going by the projected growth rate, Qatar’s economy will account for almost one third of the total GCC economy. The new budget allocation is a reflection of the country’s sustained economic growth.”

The country’s economy has made great strides in the past few years, especially with the emergence of new industries. The petrochemical sector and other manufacturing industries have great export potentials. 

Al Khater noted Qatar will be one of the countries in the region that would be benefitting hugely out of the global growth shift from West to East. The country’s improved trade relationships with China, India and other Southeast Asian economies will help boost its economy in the coming years. Qatar’s major presence in China and the Southeast Asian economies both in terms of trade and investment will benefit Qatar in a big way, he said. 

Qatar’s huge foreign investments by its sovereign fund in several sectors have started paying its dividends. This will give an extra push to Qatar’s economic growth. The Minister of Economy and Trade, H E Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim bin Mohamed Al Thani, said last week the country’s GDP reached $202.38bn in 2013, recording an impressive growth of 6.5 percent, making Qatar one of the fastest growing economies.

Early this month, QNB analysts noted Qatar’s real GDP growth is expected to accelerate to 6.8 percent in 2014 as the implementation of large infrastructure projects and higher population growth continue to drive double-digit growth in the non-hydrocarbon sector. They said Qatar’s Q4 2013 growth rate reflects the country’s growing growth rate in the non-hydrocarbon sector. Wholesale trade, hotels and restaurants were the fastest growing sectors (19.3 percent year-on-year), predominantly on the back of the double-digit increase in population.

Financial, real estate, and business services were the second fastest growing (18.1 percent year-on-year) as banking intermediation accelerated and real estate services were boosted by the growing population. Construction activity expanded by 15 percent year-on-year.

Transportation and communication increased by 8.4 percent year-on-year primarily owing to increased passenger flows through the Doha International Airport.

Looking forward, the acceleration in economic activity in the near-term is expected to be primarily driven by the implementation of large infrastructure projects in the non-hydrocarbon sector.The Peninsula

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