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For Qatari residents: Do you prefer a summer or winter World Cup 2022?

Qatar News

Written by  Author |   Tue, 24 May 2016 08:08


1) Tunneling on northern section of Doha Metro’s Red Line completed 

Qatar Rail completed tunneling on the northern section of the Red Line after one of the company’s record breaking tunnel boring machines (TBM) achieved the final breakthrough on this part of the line between Legtaifiya Station and Qatar University (QU).
This is the spot where the Red Line emerges from the tunnels and rises up onto an elevated section running past QU and on to Lusail.
Qatar Rail also reported that overall progress was moving ahead well, with over 85% of tunneling for the Doha Metro project finished and overall project completion reaching 37%. 37 stations are also under construction with 17 at the stage where the concrete roof slab is being cast.
The first phase of the Doha Metro project is expected to be complete in the fourth quarter of 2019, while completion of the Lusail Tram is set for 2020.
By 2030, all the three networks – Doha Metro, Lusail Tram and the long-distance rail, which will link Qatar with the GCC Rail network – are expected to be complete. With the completion of the first phase of the Doha Metro and Lusail Tram, Qatar Rail expects to offer 600,000 passenger trips per day by 2021. By then, 37 metro stations are expected to be complete, with an average journey time of three minutes between adjacent stations.
2) Barwa plans new mega projects in Qatar 

Qatar-based Barwa Real Estate Company plans to develop several new projects this year including a 350-unit residential project and a workers’ accommodation besides readying the master plan for a 3.6 million-sq-m golf city project in capital Doha. Barwa’s goals for 2016 include starting key projects like Dara A project in Lusail City, the Phase One of Madinat Al Mawater Project and Mustawdaat project and the extension of Barwa Village project.
Also in the pipeline are housing projects such as the one in Al Khor region comprising 300 residential apartments and 50 villas and also the Phase Two of the Barwa Al Baraha workers accommodation, consisting of 16 residential buildings.
During 2014 and 2015, Barwa had conducted a comprehensive re-structuring process, which included sale of a number of assets to cut debt and boost the company’s financial position and ensure the availability of sufficient cash balance to cover group operations.
3) Qatar population hits 2.5 million on worker influx 

Qatar's population has reached 2.5 million people for the first time swollen by the huge numbers of foreign workers employed in the country. The population now stands at 2,545,000, an official from the Ministry of Development Planning and Statistics told AFP. The previous official high was 2.46 million, recorded last November. About 90 percent of those working in Qatar are not from the country originally.
The population rise has been fueled by the huge numbers of non-nationals coming to work in Qatar in recent years, many in the gas, oil and construction sectors. Qatar is undergoing a massive labor-intensive capital investment program and is preparing to host the football World Cup in 2022.
In 1986, according to World Bank and UN figures, Qatar's population stood at just 398,000.

4) Ashghal and QDB sign MoU to support SMEs in Qatar
Qatar’s Public Works Authority (Ashghal) said it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Qatar Development Bank (QDB) to support the small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the country. Nasser bin Ali Al Mawlawi, president of Ashghal, signed the agreement with Abdulaziz bin Nasser Al Khalifa, chief executive officer of Qatar Development Bank.
The agreement is aimed at enhancing cooperation between Ashghal and QDB in supporting and developing local industries and SMEs by providing them with opportunities to participate in the authority’s projects, in addition to providing them with financial and advisory support and guidance in order to be able to develop and expand their activities, thereby creating a sustainable economy.
Based on the MoU, it has been agreed that Ashghal will include small and medium-sized companies which have been nominated by QDB in the supply chain approved by Ashghal, it said.
The MoU will also ensure that Ashghal is conducting regular meetings in collaboration with QDB to monitor the performance of the companies in accordance with the mechanism agreed upon by the two parties.
The agreement comes as part of the Procurement Contracting Exhibition, which is the first exhibition and conference in Qatar for government procurement and contracting.
Al Mawlawi highlighted that this agreement represents an important step towards the future collaboration and cooperation between the authority and QDB in the field of developing and enabling the SME sector in Qatar. 

5) Qatar to be promoted as art, cultural and sporting hub 

Qatar will be promoted as a leading global art, cultural and sporting hub, according to a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between Qatar Museums (QM) and the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC). QM, under the patronage of its chairperson HE Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani is responsible for developing, promoting and sustaining Qatar’s cultural sector.
The SC is tasked with delivering the infrastructure required for the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar. The partnership, designed to build and strengthen the collaboration that already exists between the two organizations, will principally focus on sharing knowledge and expertise.
The SC will work with QM on both a consultancy and service delivery basis. At the same time, QM will support the SC in the development and evaluation of various projects, as well as delivering a number of events and workshops. QM will also be installing a number of artworks in the 2022 FIFA World Cup stadiums as part of the collaboration.
The partnership will provide access for the SC to QM’s resources, facilities and institutions, and allow for joint promotional activities through various channels, including social media and newsletters.
6) JV for 1,000 MW solar power 

Qatar plans to build around 1,000 megawatts of solar power generating capacity to diversify its energy mix away from hydrocarbons. Qatar Electricity and Water Company said in late December it would hold 60 percent of a new solar power joint venture with Qatar Petroleum.
The two shareholders will provide $500 million of start-up capital. International companies will be invited to back 40 percent of each project through a competitive tender process. 
7) Qatar to make $7.2 billion from tourism by 2025 

Qatar's tourism receipts are forecast to grow to $7.2 billion by 2025 as the country looks to diversify its economy away from oil and gas over the next decade. The country's tourism sector is set to grow annually by 4.7 percent after travel and tourism is estimated to have contributed $4.6 billion for 2015, a rise of 7.3 percent over the previous year.
Qatar's tourism industry is building momentum as it enters the second half of the decade, with an ambitious target of four million visitors by 2020, supported by $40-45 billion worth of sector investment under the country's National Tourism Sector Strategy 2030 plan.
Reports suggest the addition of 11 new hotel properties with a total of 1,400 rooms to the market in 2015 as part of its commitment to reach 50,000 additional rooms by the 2022, when it will host the FIFA World Cup. Official statistics tally current hotel room capacity at 17,900 keys, 84 percent of which is four and five-star accommodation.
8) Qatar received 2.93 million visitors in 2015; up 3.7% 

Qatar Tourism Authority announced that the country has received 2.93 million visitors in 2015, a 3.7% increase compared to 2014. The report noted that the Qatari tourism sector grew in 2015 despite global events that had a big impact on the patterns for travel destinations worldwide. The tourism sector in Qatar have been growing 11.5% annually since 2010.
GCC visitors increased 16% year-on-year. African countries (Non-Arab) were up 5%. Visitors from Europe and the Americas were up 5% and 1% respectively.
Nationalities that visited Qatar the most in 2015 were GCC nationals with 44%. Indians came second with 13% of the total. Followed by British, US citizens and Egyptians who combined represented 10.8% of the visitors.

9) Designs for 65 new parks underway in Qatar

The Ministry of Municipality and Urban Planning (MMUP) is preparing designs of 65 new public parks to be built across Qatar. Speaking on a talk-in radio program ‘Watani Al Habib’, Mohammed Ali Al Khori, director of Public Parks at the MMUP said, “We are preparing designs for 65 new public parks in different municipalities.” The parks are in different stages of development and design.
He added that in coordination with the authorities, the department is surveying areas to allocate plots of land on which to build the parks. “Our aim is to cover all municipalities and provide amenities to all the people living in the country,” he added.
Al Khori explained that designs of three parks had been completed and within the coming three to four months tenders will be invited to build the parks.
Once the plot of land is allocated by the relevant authority, the department will contact service providers, prior to preparing designs and inviting tenders, The Peninsula reports.
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