Heir Apparent opens Made in Qatar exhibition

January 17, 2013 - 2:00:20 am

The Heir Apparent H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani talking to dignitaries during his tour of the stalls after inaugurating the ‘Made in Qatar’ exhibition at Doha Exhibition Centre yesterday. The three-day event is being organised by Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry in collaboration with the Ministry of Energy and Industry. 

DOHA: The Heir Apparent, H H  Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, inaugurated the Made in Qatar exhibition at Doha Exhibition Centre  yesterday. 

After the opening ceremony, the Heir Apparent visited pavilions, especially the stalls dedicated to ‘traditional craft’, and assured state support for such projects through the Ministry of Social Affairs. He listened to a presentation about other projects and industries.

Several ministers, Qatari businessmen and other dignitaries also attended the opening ceremony. 

The three-day event is organised by the Qatar Chamber in collaboration with the Ministry of Energy and Industry.

The exhibition showcases 160 local companies in five categories: Industries, Manufacture & Food Industries, Petrochemical Industries, Various Industries and Light and Medium Industries together occupying 15,000sqm space.   

Made in Qatar was launched four years ago to support and promote small and medium industries in Qatar. 

Major companies such as Qatar Steel, Qatalum and Qatargas are sponsors of this year’s exhibition. 

Meanwhile, a seminar on mechanisms of supporting small and medium industries (SMIs) started on the sidelines of the exhibition. Qatar Chamber, Enterprise Qatar (EQ), Qatar Development Bank (QDB) and Gulf Organisation for Industrial Consulting (GOIC) participated in the event.

The seminar aims to create a platform for dialogue and make recommendations to drive the Qatari private sector, particularly small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to help diversify sources of national income to achieve sustainable development in line with Qatar National Vision 2030.

Chamber Chairman Sheikh Khalifa bin Jassem bin Mohammed Al Thani said that Qatar has come to realise that SMEs constitute a major tool to achieve economic and social development, diversify sources of income and create investment and economic opportunities in sectors other than oil and gas, noting that EQ was created to meet that end along with QDB, which offers low-interest financial support.

He added that the efforts deserve appreciation but stressed they are not enough to create a strong and competitive industrial sector, as there is shortage of land needed to meet the growing demand for industrial projects. He also noted that the lack of support for Qatari products by not being given priority in government procurement are key impediments.

He added that the lack of industrial coordination between the GCC countries, the absence of policies and measures that can expand investment opportunities, and non-implementation of the principle of specialisation or distributing industries in accordance with relative advantages of each country are all obstacles to the establishment of a strong industrial sector.

Several lectures and seminars will be held on the sidelines of the exhibition. 

Prominent industry experts will discuss the challenges facing in the industry, and how to overcome them. 

The exhibition will be open for visitors today from 9am to 1pm and 4pm to 10pm and tomorrow between 2pm and 10pm.

The Peninsula/QNA