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Doha
Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Qatar announces new neighborhood market concept

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In an effort to reduce congestion in central Doha, the Ministry of Economy and Commerce has launched a new commercial concept to bring together bakeries, grocery stores, laundry services, banking options, pharmacies and other outlets in one place.

The initiative, titled Al Furjan Markets, is being developed in neighborhoods that are far from the city, making it easier for residents in these areas to access important services without having to drive into Doha.

The project would also include taxi stops, post offices and ATMs. It is the result of a collaboration between the Ministry of Municipality and Urban Planning (MMUP), Qatar Development Bank (QDB), Qatar Chamber and the Central Bank (QCB).

Speaking to reporters yesterday, the Minister of Economy and Commerce, Ahmed Bin Jassim Al Thani, cited Qatar’s growing population as the main motivation for the initiative.

So far, the MMUP has allocated a total of 44 pieces of land for the project, including:

  • Al Thamama (four complexes);
  • Ain Khaled (four);
  • Hazm Al Markhiya (three);
  • Laqtifia (seven);
  • Jeryan Nejeema (three);
  • Rawdat Al Hamama (nine);
  • Al Aab (four);
  • Rawdat Qadeem (six); and
  • Al Merad (four).

Notably, officials said this plan is different from an earlier initiative to construct nine commercial zones in Doha and nearby municipalities to replace many of the 7,000+ neighborhood shops (baqalas) that are currently sprinkled in residential areas across Qatar.

Timeline

Phases one and two of Al Furjan Markets were launched in 2013 and have already been completed. They involved the construction of some 40 complexes, for a total of 298 shops.

In the third and last phase, which is expected to be completed by year-end, 290 more commercial units will become available, for a total of 600 stores.

In addition to reducing traffic in Doha, officials said they hope the initiative helps bolster Qatar’s economy.

According to the Peninsula, Qataris can register online to enter a lottery for a license to operate one of the shops starting May 11.

The newspaper adds that there are already complaints from local businessmen about the shop rent (QR6,000/month) being too high.

However, Chairman of the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry Sheikh Khalifa bin Jassim Al Thani insisted yesterday that the markets would contribute to correcting prices of essential commodities and provide shops with reasonable rents.

He added that the design and architecture of the place would reflect Qatar’s distinctive tradition, heritage and culture.

Thoughts?

22 COMMENTS

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AEC
AEC
6 years ago

Love it! Just add footpaths. We have something like this nearby already but even though it is only a few hundred metres there is no footpath between us and there so it is bit precarious getting there.

Mohammad
Mohammad
6 years ago

Appreciate if more informayion could be provided on how to register online.

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago
Reply to  Mohammad

Available in all local Arabic papers. Plus the title is misleading. The project has been announced for years, it’s the scheme of how to secure a space and the different business which will operate that’s new. Alarab local Arabic newspaper gives a lot of details on how to apply and the type of businesses per area

DB
DB
6 years ago

Welcome to the 20th century!

Firas Zirie
6 years ago

“the markets would contribute to correcting prices of essential commodities and provide shops with reasonable rents”

That might work for Qataris with their occasional 60% salary raises (no biggie), but what about the rest of us being strangled by rising rents and other costs?

If anyone is planning to retort with “no one is forcing you to stay”, save it!

LoveItOrLeaveIt2
LoveItOrLeaveIt2
6 years ago
Reply to  Firas Zirie

If you don’t want to leave, then lower your standards.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago

LOL

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago

Lol same response.. Before I red urs

Deepak Babu
Deepak Babu
6 years ago

Such a predictable troll.

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago
Reply to  Firas Zirie

But really no one is forcing you to stay… If life in Doha is too expensive and what ever skills you bring to Qatar’s economy is of limited value that your not compensated as much as you like… Then either leave or settle for a lower standard of living

eak
eak
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

Our country needs the labour to build it and help it function so it has to accommodate them as well. If they do start to leave our only option will ultimately be to pay someone else a higher wage, and that will increase prices of everything.
There is no easy solution to the economic problems in the country so dont ask me to propose an alternative, thats beyond my ability. But in the mean time it wont hurt us to show them a bit more respect

LoveItOrLeaveIt2
LoveItOrLeaveIt2
6 years ago
Reply to  eak

They are replaceable, Mr.Expat writing as a Qatari.

eak
eak
6 years ago

Oh im sorry i didnt know you had a nationality detector installed. What a stupid comment, I am Qatari.. and I mentioned above that they are replaceable but not without extra costs. be grateful for what you have

Pete
Pete
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

And while you’re about it…let them eat cake.

osamaalassiry
osamaalassiry
6 years ago
Reply to  Firas Zirie

Look like you were hurt by that 60%…

eak
eak
6 years ago
Reply to  osamaalassiry

All expats will be hurt by the 60%… prices everywhere will rise and thats not a joke for some people so try not to be sarcastic about it

osamaalassiry
osamaalassiry
6 years ago
Reply to  eak

It’s my prerogative to be sarcastic about it.

I was replying to “That might work for Qataris with their occasional 60% salary raises”, that was written as if that happens every few months… That happened once, in 2011 (after the UAE gave 100%) and it seems that some people are still envious and keep stating it as if it helps.

DavidRSS8
DavidRSS8
6 years ago

Great idea, but somehow I doubt Qataris will stroll down to the shop as per the video. My guess is lots LCs honking horns and Asian workers running back and forth between the cars and shops.

This is not to criticize the practice, as I have embraced this as part of local culture, but to point out the naivety of the plan.

eak
eak
6 years ago
Reply to  DavidRSS8

True but that doesnt change the fact that shops in every neighborhood will be beneficial to everyone… which is the point

disqus_21uQ1hXhE0
disqus_21uQ1hXhE0
6 years ago
Reply to  DavidRSS8

People will walk if the density of the community precludes the need for a car. So if the center is planned with houses, schools in walking distance and sidewalks, bike paths, etc. around them, then it will work. My neighborhood would be terrific to walk through if they just added sidewalks.

Saffa
Saffa
6 years ago

“new neighbourhood market complex”… seems to me this concept is a few thousand years old????
And as DavidRSS8 comments, best it has a long drive-through lane for the LC’s

Will
Will
6 years ago

Fantastic news! I live near West Bay Petrol station and it already provides all of this. It saves me having to drive into town to buy a few simple things. I can walk there and back in 10 minutes, the benefits to this are huge and it’s great to see a different direction to the endless shopping malls. Well done Qatar!

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