DOHA: The country’s tourism promotion agency has now been given the authority to license companies that organise exhibitions here or deal in businesses relating to exhibitions.
A new law passed on Wednesday authorises Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) to license and regulate companies that organise exhibitions or do businesses concerning exhibitions.
Licensed companies will be required to seek permission from the authorities concerned to hold exhibitions that concern a particular sector or industry.
The licensing period will be one year and renewable for similar periods or more, says the law that has 29 articles.
No individual or company will be allowed to hold an exhibition overseas in the name of Qatar unless prior approval is obtained from the State Cabinet.
Existing companies in the business of organising exhibitions locally or carrying out activities that concern exhibitions, have been allowed six months to approach QTA for licensing.
They can be allowed a further grace period of six months if the Cabinet so orders, according to Article 26 of the new legislation.
The legislation (Law No. 17 of 2013) was passed by the Emir, H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani on Wednesday, Qatar News Agency (QNA) reported.
Licensed companies will be required by the law to submit annual plans for training Qatari manpower in exhibition management.
No company will be allowed to sublet or rent out its licence to anyone else and it must be used, according to rules and regulations in place, by the company owner who has been issued the licence.
In the eventuality of death of the owner, his family will need to inform QTA within three months providing details of the person who would be replacing the deceased.
The QTA chairman has been given authority under the law to classify licensed companies into various categories.
Companies that carry out the business of holding exhibitions or activities concerning exhibitions without a valid licence will be liable to be fined from QR20,000 to QR100,000 and the person owning such a company could be jailed for up to one year, or both.
Lesser fines from QR10,000 to QR50,000 await the licensed companies that breach the articles of this law or the terms and conditions as specified by QTA.
QTA will also approve workers a licensed company selects to manage its affairs, says the law.The Peninsula