By Satish Kanady
DOHA: The first exclusive Chinese market in Qatar, Dragon Mart, is expected to open its doors to customers at the iconic Barwa Commercial Avenue on the Abu Hamour-Industrial Area road in December this year.
Jiang, CEO, DragonMart Doha told The Peninsula yesterday that ‘everything has been put in place and we are excited to announce that we will throw open our doors in December”.
Originally scheduled to open on July 1, 2012, the Dragon Mart was forced to put off its plans as it faced huge delay in getting the electricity connection.
As their project schedule went haywire, the company had to cancel shipments of hundreds of thousands of tones of materials. It also sent back a large number of workers and a group of engineers.
“We faced an unexpected delay in getting the power connections for Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation. Now we got the electricity connection and the fit-out works and interior designs have almost completed. We are all set to open our outlets in December,” Jiang who is currently in China, told over phone.
Dragon Mart is the single group that has leased out maximum space at the 8km Barwa Commercial Avenue. As the initial phase, its shopping mall facility alone has leased out 20,000 sq m. An estimated 300 companies have invested in the shopping mall, which will offer a wide range of products ranging from building materials, hardware, furniture, electronic materials, communication products, textiles and furnishings.
Barwa’s leasing subsidiary Waseef’s CEO Abdullah Jabara Al Rumaihi in a separate interview to a local Arabic daily said a large portion of the Commercial Avenue has already been leased out. Most of them are in the final phase of preparations to open as some of them are awaiting the safety certificates from the competent authority. The Dragon Mart is also expected to open soon, he said.
Another senior executive of Dragon Mart said the development of the “China Town” is fast progressing near the Barwa Commercial Avenue.
The township is expected to become the largest gathering place for Chinese in Qatar capable of accommodating over 3,000 residents with the entire infrastructure. An estimated 2,500 to 3,000 Chinese are expected to join as staffers in over 200 shops and retail outlets in the initial phase of the opening of Dragon Mart.
The township will be hosting the families of these staff.
Planned as a dedicated living area for the vast number of Chinese families, the township will have nearly 100 villas and 1,168 apartment suites. The project will also feature Chinese restaurants, supermarkets, playgrounds, recreation clubs and salons. Apart from the township, Dragon Mart is also developing a vast ‘logistics village’ with a total area of 200,000 sq m that would have various warehouses, including a cold storage.