Returns could be big on Qatari railways
According to a Railways Company executive [in Qatar], there is about $38 billion (Dh139.76 billion) worth of potential returns for investors over the next 20 years in rail-related projects in the country.
The executive quoted was speaking at the Middle East Rail conference, which kicked off yesterday in Dubai. Out of a total 200 rail “business opportunities”, 75 per cent are in railway infrastructure, covering construction and operations maintenance.
Of those, 23 per cent are in light manufacturing, rail stock and other business development opportunities, said Sa’ad Al Mohannadi, chief executive of Qatar Railways Company. He was citing a study on business opportunities in rail and metro infrastructure by MacKenzie International Consulting, who have been signed on by the company.
Of the $38 billion in investor return potential, about $25 billion are directly linked to rail projects, he said. “This [$38 billion] will be spread in all project cycles, from construction to facility management.”
The company will be holding a workshop for potential local and foreign investors this month, at a date to be announced soon, to inform them of investment opportunities in upcoming rail projects, he said.
Qatar’s extensive rail projects will consume 8 million tonnes of steel, or 100 times the amount of steel used to construct the Eiffel Tower in Paris, he said.
“There is a huge opportunity in Qatar for all types and aspects of rail. We urge manufacturers to study the Qatari market and to have a local partner for smooth delivery,” Al Mohannadi said. He also cautioned that the opportunities at hand are fast moving and would require investors to move fast on them.