Qatar’s goal to shift from infrastructure development to tourism after 2022: Al Khater

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Commercial Bank booth at the Qatar Trade Summit.

Doha: Describing Qatar’s economy after the 2022 World Cup, Nasser Al Khater, CEO of the 2022 Qatar Soccer World Cup, said the country’s focus will shift from infrastructure development to tourism, and will likely go in the same direction as Russia after the 2018 World Cup.

Al Khater was speaking at a panel discussion at the Qatar Trade Summit which opened yesterday. During the event, he also reiterated the World Cup’s long-term economic return for the country and how it will be unique in terms of innovation and sustainability.

Asked about the country’s economic growth prospects after next year’s World Cup, Al Khater said Qatar’s expansion of its LNG production will create a new growth spurt in the economy.

“And I think the focus is going to shift from infrastructure development and more to tourism. Entertainment and hospitality offerings are growing in the country. Qatar Tourism and Qatar Airways are doing a good job. And I think after the World Cup, Qatar will go in the same direction as what we saw with Russia after the 2018 World Cup, ”added Al Khater.

The organizers of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia claimed that the World Cup added $ 14 billion to the Russian economy and that its benefits continue to be felt, especially through tourism.

Al Khater added, “We will also see a greater focus on globalization in some of Qatar’s industries, and hopefully really support private sector companies and help them go global. Beyond that, I think Qatar will also look to new sources of energy and probably develop globally ”.

Also speaking at the event, Lim Meng Hui, CEO of the Qatar Free Zones Authority (QFZA), in his keynote address, highlighted how the QFZA overcame the COVID-19 pandemic by harnessing its infrastructure existing using digital technologies.

“Over the next few years, we will continue to attract global companies to Qatar. Qatar also has great potential in the tech sector. The country is able to provide some of the best 5G network coverage and infrastructure in the world, which offers advantages to companies specializing in AI, advanced mobility and other technologies of the future, ”he said. added.

Addressing the forum earlier in his opening speech, HE Andrii Kuzmenko, Ukrainian Ambassador to Qatar, said bilateral trade between Qatar and Ukraine reached $ 146 million. Trade volume between the two countries also increased to $ 124 million in the first eight months of the year, from $ 98 million in the same period last year.

The Ambassador added: “I am sure that the successful concession of the Ukrainian seaport, owned by Qatari company Q-Terminals, is only the start of the implementation of a long-term bilateral investment project. between our two states. In addition, the investment agreement between Ukraine and Enterprise UDP Renewables and Qatari Nebras Power in the green field also proves the substantial interest of the Ukrainian market for Qatari investors ”.

Blockchain technology was also discussed at the event.

In his presentation, Raju Buddhiraju, EGM and Head of Wholesale Banking Services at Commercial Bank, reiterated that blockchain will be a key element in tackling the growing problem of counterfeit products.

He said the economic value of counterfeiting is expected to reach $ 2.3 trillion by 2022, while blockchain technology is also expected to reach $ 3.1 trillion by 2030.

Asked how long can the blockchain be available for individual use, Buddhiraju said, “The public coin that is unauthorized, that part can happen maybe within three to four years.”

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