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Driving Qatar’s economic diversification through investment

Sheikh Ali Alwaleed Al-Thani highlights the strategies crucial for attracting foreign investment in an exclusive interview with Oxford Business Group

Doha, February 2024: Oxford Business Group (OBG) explores Qatar’s strategies for economic diversification in its latest interview with Sheikh Ali Alwaleed Al-Thani, CEO of Investment Promotion Agency Qatar (Invest Qatar). The interview, titled “Sustained Momentum,” explores Qatar’s proactive approach in leveraging cooperation and competitive advantages to attract foreign investment.

In the interview, Sheikh Ali Alwaleed Al-Thani sheds light on key initiatives driving Qatar’s transition to a diversified, knowledge-based economy.

Significant investments in transport infrastructure projects, such as Hamad International Airport, Hamad Port and Doha Metro, form a crucial part of Qatar’s strategy. The emphasis on human capital development through initiatives like Education City and strategic partnerships with international universities highlights the nation’s commitment to nurturing talent. Additionally, regulatory reforms, including the liberalisation of foreign ownership laws and progressive visa policies, contribute to making Qatar an attractive destination for skilled professionals.

Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) are identified as a cornerstone of Qatar’s economic diversification efforts, fostering a business ecosystem that prioritises productivity, competitiveness and private sector-led growth. The May 2020 PPP law is underscored as a significant milestone, providing investors with confidence and predictability. Diverse sectors, including education, health care, real estate, tourism and energy, present promising opportunities for collaboration.

Collaborations with global tech giants, such as Microsoft and Google, showcase the country’s favourable investment climate and growth potential. Ongoing partnerships to develop innovation centres reinforce Qatar’s dedication to advancing key sectors like energy, health care and transport.

The successful organisation of the 2022 FIFA World Cup has elevated Qatar’s profile for businesses and investors. Sheikh Ali notes that this event has bolstered efforts to present the country as a centre for finance, high-tech manufacturing, sport and culture, enhancing its appeal to international investors. Looking ahead, significant FDI opportunities are anticipated in emerging sectors like agriculture technology, sport technology, smart logistics, cybersecurity and clean technology.

Sheikh Ali highlighted that Qatar’s commitment extends to significant investments in its physical and digital infrastructure, positioning the country as a prominent tech centre in the Middle East.

“Qatar has forged a business-friendly environment marked by 100% foreign ownership and favourable regulations, reflecting our commitment to fostering a dynamic atmosphere for global investors. PPPs stand as a cornerstone in our economic diversification, cultivating a vibrant business ecosystem that prioritises productivity, competitiveness, and private sector-led growth,” he added.

The full interview will be featured in the upcoming publication, The Report: Qatar 2024, showcasing Qatar’s economic and strategic developments.

About Oxford Business Group

Oxford Business Group (OBG) is a global research and advisory company with a presence in over 30 countries, spanning Africa, the Middle East, Asia, and the Americas. It is recognised internationally as a distinctive and respected provider of on-the-ground intelligence on world’s fastest-growing markets, termed The Yellow Slice, in reference to OBG’s corporate colour. 

Through its range of products – Economic News and Views; OBG CEO Surveys; OBG Events and Conferences; Global Platform, which hosts exclusive video interviews; and The Report publications – as well as its Advisory division, OBG offers comprehensive and accurate analysis of macroeconomic and sector-level developments for sound investment opportunities and business decisions. 

OBG provides business intelligence to its subscribers through multiple platforms, including its direct subscribers, Dow Jones Factiva subscribers, the Bloomberg Professional Services subscribers, Refinitiv’s (previously Thomson Reuters) Eikon subscribers, and more.

About Invest Qatar

The Investment Promotion Agency Qatar (Invest Qatar) is responsible for overseeing investment promotion activities, aimed at attracting foreign direct investment to Qatar. Established in 2019, Invest Qatar’s mission is to strengthen Qatar’s position as an ideal investment destination, while facilitating investments that foster economic diversification and development.

As the gateway to investment solutions, Invest Qatar connects investors to an integrated ecosystem of business and licensing platforms. The Agency partners with investors throughout their journey, from exploration and setup to expansion, ensuring their long-term growth by providing comprehensive insights into Qatar’s business landscape, sector-specific market knowledge and tailored investment facilitation.

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