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Monday, April 19, 2021

Qatar’s private sector to boost public projects involvement by year-end

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Photo for illustrative purposes only.
Photo for illustrative purposes only.

New rules will be introduced this year to help increase the number of public-private partnerships in Qatar and lessen the financial strain on the government.

Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim al-Thani, who leads the Ministry of Economy and Commerce (MEC), announced plans for new legislation yesterday at the MEED Qatar Projects conference, according to a statement.

With PPPs, as they are commonly known, the private sector becomes more involved in public construction projects and assumes more risk in exchange for a financial return.

A rendering of a new labor camp for blue-collar expats.
A rendering of a new labor camp for blue-collar expats.

A local example are the new labor camps under construction in Umm Slal, where private developers will finance, construct and operate the facilities for 15 years.

During this time, they will keep the rental revenue they collect, before turning the properties over to the government.

Education, health and sports

The new focus on PPPs comes after Qatar’s Emir said in November that businesses should stop being “patrons” of the state and instead create a more robust private sector.

He added that the government has a role to play by creating favorable investment conditions, supporting startup firms and eliminating bureaucratic bottlenecks.

In the statement issued this week, Saud al-Attiyah, an MEC official, said that the aim is to start implementing the law “by the end of the year.”

He added that PPPs would create new opportunities in several sectors, including sports, health and education, where there is a plan to build some dozen schools.

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