Govt seizes 70 unused plots given to SMEs

April 29, 2014 - 2:37:48 am

DOHA: Some 70 plots of land that were allotted for SMEs in the Industrial Area have been taken back by the government as the beneficiaries were not found serious about launching projects.

These plots are to be given away to serious entrepreneurs: People who are serious about launching small and medium-sized projects, say the authorities.

More such plots (that have been allotted for SMEs) but so far remain unused will be seized and given away to serious entrepreneurs.

The Industrial Area for SMEs has been divided into nine zones with the idea to create active production bases for local marketing of products as well as for exports.

“We have until now taken back 70 plots that we had allotted for SMEs and we will be withdrawing many more from those who are not serious entrepreneurs,” said Hamad Al Kubaisi, head of planning and development section at the Industrial Areas Department.

The Department is part of the Ministry of Energy and Industry. 

Al Kubaisi said in a press statement yesterday that more industrial areas were being set up to boost SMEs.

Currently, some 620 SME projects are at various stages of launch in the country and their total investment is a huge QR10bn.

Of these, 200 projects are expected to begin production soon, said Al Kubaisi. Some of the remaining 420 projects are under construction, while many are at the licensing stage.

According to Sultan Khalifa Al Hitmi, director of customer relations at Dhameen at the state-owned Qatar Development Bank (QDB), the bank will finance 300 SME projects this year.

Al Dhameen is a programme exclusively devoted to bolstering SMEs, which are crucial to the success of the state’s economic diversification effort.

The QDB has so far given away financing to the tune of a whopping QR800m for SMEs.

As for new SMEs, the QDB is giving away up to 85 percent of the value of a project, while for existing project the bank provides financing up to 75 percent of the value, said Al Hitmi.

The Peninsula