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Country Forecast Qatar October 2017

Country Forecast Qatar October 2017

  • October 2017
  • ID: 325734
  • Format: PDF
  • The Economist Intelligence Unit

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Policy towards private enterprise and competition


2018-19: The government looks to finalise a long-delayed public-private partnership (PPP) framework to boost private-sector participation in project finance. There may be more initial public offerings of stakes in public enterprises.


2020-22: Government entities look to outsource more of their functions in order to boost the private sector. Although formally competitive tendering processes are used, local connections remain essential to securing many contracts.


Policy towards foreign investment


2018-19: Qatar completes the development of three new economic zones to facilitate foreign investment and support government efforts to diversify the economy; they are located near Doha airport, the new port at Doha and the Doha Industrial Zone.


2020-22: Foreign oil companies negotiate generous terms to participate in the expansion of liquefied natural gas (LNG) production from the North Field.


Foreign trade and exchange controls


2018-19: Qatar develops new trading relationships to compensate for the prolonged boycott by three of its neighbours. Qatar maintains a liberal stance on trade and foreign-exchange controls.


2020-22: If the boycott remains in place, Qatar will look to develop new trade deals with major partners, including post-Brexit UK, in place of the previous system in which trade agreements were negotiated multilaterally by the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC).


Taxes


2018-19: The low flat tax rate of 10% on corporations (excluding hotels) remains in place. Value-added tax is implemented-albeit with some delay.


2020-22: Other taxes may be considered, depending on the oil price trajectory.


Financing


2018-19: Qatar increases its efforts to create a domestic bond market, with the Qatar Stock Exchange introducing trading in government bonds, Treasury bills and government sukuk (Islamic securities).


2020-22: The Qatar Financial Centre pursues its plans to become a global hub for insurance and asset management.


The labour market


2018-19: Efforts continue to reduce labour abuses as Qatar faces international scrutiny linked to preparations for the 2022 football World Cup. However, the broad system of employment-tied residency and exit visas remains in place.


2020-22: A new system of permanent residency is implemented, applying to certain high-skilled expatriates, as well as other groups of people, such as the children of Qatari mothers by foreign fathers (who are not eligible for citizenship).


Infrastructure


2018-19: Construction continues apace on the Doha Metro, and major upgrades are made to the roads in and around Doha.


2020-22: Construction of the transport infrastructure needed to support the World Cup is completed. There is further expansion to the airport and to Hamad Port.



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