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HomeQatar TimesQatar fourth richest country worldwide, first in Arab region

Qatar fourth richest country worldwide, first in Arab region

The World Cup is expected to have a major economic impact on the country, enabling the tourism sector to flourish as Doha doubles in size. 

Qatar has been ranked as the richest Arab country and the fourth wealthiest on a global scale, per findings by the Global Finance’s latest report.

“The per-capita GDP of a Qatari citizen was over $143,222 in 2014, it was ‘just’ $97,846 a year later, and to this day it remains barely above that level,” read the report.

The Gulf state was followed by the UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Oman. Qatar’s ranking comes as its economy continues its post-pandemic recovery, described as “the fastest growing economy” by the World Bank.

The country’s real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is expected to increase by 4.9% this year, followed by a 4.5% growth in 2023 and 4.4% rise in the year 2024.

“Still, the country’s oil, gas and petrochemical reserves are so large, and its population so small—just 2.8 million—that this marvel of ultramodern architecture, luxury shopping malls and fine cuisine has managed to top the list of the world’s richest nations for 20 years,” said the Global Finance.

Qatar’s economic growth will also be the fastest in comparison to other GCC states throughout the years 2023 and 2024.

Addressing the Qatar Economic Forum (QEF) in June, the Gulf state’s leader Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani said his country has been introducing legislative amendments to encourage commercial transactions, enhance competition, and ensure consumer protection.

One such development includes allowing 100 % foreign investors ownership of companies, which has in turn has “led to a significant increase in the volume of domestic and foreign investment”.

Foreign direct investment increased by 27% in 2021 in comparison to 2020, said the leader.

Oil and gas

A major contributing factor to Qatar’s projected GDP growth is its current plans to boost its liquified natural gas (LNG) production under the North Field expansion project.

The project is the biggest of its kind and is set to boost Qatar’s annual LNG gas production capacity from 77 million metric tonnes to 126 million tonnes by the year 2027. The project is expected to generate revenue of $40 billion upon the completion of the first part by 2025. 

There has already been a high demand for Qatari gas in light of the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine. Several European countries have turned to the Gulf state since the start of the year in an effort to reduce their reliance on Russian gas.

Some of the countries include Italy, Germany and France. Europe receives 40% of its gas supplies from Moscow and almost a third of the shipments pass through Ukraine.

Meanwhile, Qatar’s crude oil and condensate exports spiked by 11% to reach approximately 970,000 barrels per day (bpd) in June from up to 876,000 recorded in May. 

In June, Doha’s crude oil exports also increased at 16%, accounting for some 711,000 bpd, while condensate exports recorded a decline of about 2%, reaching levels of 259,000 bpd.

World Cup

Beyond Qatar’s oil and gas production, the Gulf state has come under global attention as the first Middle Eastern country to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

Qatar is set to welcome at least 1.5 million football fans from around the world between November and December this year for the major event. 

The World Cup is expected to have a major economic impact on the country, enabling the tourism sector to flourish as Doha doubles in size. 

More than one million tickets have already been purchased, and at least 40 million applications submitted to attend the global sporting event.

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