US$ 24 billion GDP drives Qatar property boom
Participation by Qatar-based property developers at Cityscape Dubai has leapt in just one year according to organisers IIR Middle East. The organisers of the world’s largest international B2B real estate event are said to be overwhelmed by the response from Qatar as an emerging investment opportunity in the worldwide property market.
Rohan Marwaha, Group Development Director, Cityscape Dubai, commented, “At Cityscape 2005 we had just 72 square metres of space booked by Qatari companies. This year the figure has jumped to a massive 460 square metres, with the major industry players in the country participating.”
Cityscape, which is being held at the Dubai International Exhibition Centre, on
4-6 December 2006, is attracting companies such as Qatari Diar Real Estate, The Land, Kuwaiti Qatar Real Estate and the Al Madar Group.
Desperate not to be left out of the burgeoning Middle East property market, Qatar is capitalising on its massive gas reserves which has transformed the peninsula state. The Qatari GDP per capita income of US$ 26,000 ranks number one in the world and is higher than that of the USA, for the first time in history, making it a key market for those looking to develop property in both the commercial and residential real estate markets.
Qatari Diar has been responsible for the launch of the country’s biggest real estate development – the $5 billion mixed-use Lusail project. Covering more than 35 square kilometres, accommodating up to 200,000 people and with an estimated budget of $5 billion, Lusail is one of the largest developments in the region.
Lusail Development will include a large lagoon with two marinas, major residential areas providing quality, high and low density housing to meet all needs, extensive commercial districts and mixed-use areas, comprehensive leisure and entertainment facilities including two golf courses and an entertainment district, naturally functional silt-free beaches as well as all the necessary social amenities such as mosques, parks, schools, shopping centres and medical centres.
Qatari Diar is also managing developments in Al Kharaij and Jebel Thiyab in Qatar, as well as making forays into other countries. This year the company has forged partnerships with major players in Singapore and France as it seeks to develop its interests world-wide.
Also in the country The Pearl-Qatar development will eventually become home to some 42,000 people located on some 985 acres of reclaimed land. It was the country’s first international real estate venture and the first to offer freehold and residential rights to foreign investors.
“Liquidity is strong and the Qatari government is extremely progressive and supportive, especially towards direct foreign investment. The increased participation in this year’s event reflects the current status of the market in Qatar which is exciting and fast paced. Cityscape is the perfectly placed to reflect that,” added Marwaha.