DOHA: Land and property prices are expected to rise considerably in the near future as mega development projects are launched and a rising number of international companies make a beeline to enter the booming Qatari market, real estate sector sources say.
After land and property prices went up almost 50 percent last year, a lull is being witnessed in sale transactions for the past four weeks, data issued by the real estate registration department of the justice ministry show. “This is a lull before a storm,” a market source said, hinting the market would look up in the near future.
Sales of land and property totalled QR2.1bn in the past four weeks as against QR3.1bn recorded in the same period in 2012, showing a 41 percent drop. “Land and property prices are very high. That might be affecting demand for the time being. But soon the situation is expected to reverse,” said a source.
Market sources say the demand for land and property is likely to shoot up as soon as some mega projects are launched. Since bank rates remain low, the sources expect a heavy flow of liquidity from the banking industry to the real estate market.
Prince Muqrin named second deputy PM of Saudi Arabia
RIYADH: The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia has named former intelligence chief Prince Muqrin bin Abdulaziz as second deputy prime minister, a role historically seen as making the incumbent second in line to become king.
The role means Muqrin will be in charge of the day-to-day running of government if both King Abdullah, who is also prime minister, and Crown Prince Salman, who is first deputy prime minister, are both unwell or travelling abroad.
One killed as police clash with Egypt protesters
CAIRO: At least one protester was shot dead and dozens wounded yesterday when riot police clashed with demonstrators demanding the overthrow of Egyptian President Mohammed Mursi, witnesses said.
Youths threw petrol bombs and shot fireworks at the outer wall of Mursi’s Cairo presidential compound as night fell. Police responded by firing water cannon and tear gas, leading to skirmishes in the surrounding streets.
See also page 8
The Shard, western Europe’s tallest tower, opens
LONDON: The Shard, western Europe’s highest skyscraper and the pinnacle of the transformation of London’s long-neglected south bank of the River Thames, opened its doors to the public yesterday.
The Shard — 95 percent financed by Qatar — houses a premium hotel, several restaurants, 12 floors of apartments, 600,000 square feet of office space as well as the viewing deck. Mayor Boris Johnson cut the ribbon for the first public visitors atop the 310-metre futuristic tower looming over London bridge.
See also page 24
THE PENINSULA & AGENCIES