Oil prices cut Project Qatar participation by 15%

It is nevertheless a promising time for Qatar's construction sector as $280bn worth of projects take shape, a senior official from Project Qatar's organising team said

Project Qatar organisers believe the country's infrastructure pipeline will be resilient against oil prices.
Project Qatar organisers believe the country's infrastructure pipeline will be resilient against oil prices.

The slowdown in global oil prices has impacted Qatar's construction sector, leading to a 15% drop in participation at Project Qatar 2016, a show official said. 

However, organisers of the three-day event, to be held at Doha Exhibition and Convention Centre next month, have expressed optimism about Qatar's pipeline of infrastructure projects. 

George Ayache, general manager of IFP Qatar, said the Gulf state is "the only country in the Middle East with a mandate to develop its infrastructure". 

This initiative, Ayache said, relates to Qatar's hosting rights for FIFA World Cup 2022. 

“The Qatari government has given its assurance that major projects leading to the FIFA World Cup 2022 and Qatar National Vision 2030 are pushing through, so we’re very optimistic and positive for a better 2016 and 2017,” he sa

Whilst low oil prices have "already" had an impact on the local construction sector, the situation is far from bleak for Project Qatar, Ayache continued. 

“We were expecting a major decrease in the number of participants this year, but thankfully there was only a 15% drop, which means that low oil prices have created an impact in the budget of the country.

"This had affected some of the contractors and exhibitors planning to join Project Qatar,” he said.

However, the decrease in Project Qatar exhibitors provided organisers “an indication that the market in Qatar is very healthy", Ayache told local daily Gulf Times

He continued: “I am optimistic and positive that despite the slowdown in the global economy, the market will pick up. 

"As for the budget spent, a lot of projects are ongoing; $280bn worth of projects in Qatar are in the pipeline, so why not be optimistic?” 

Project Qatar 2016 will be held between 9 and 12 May. 

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