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Qatar set to introduce PPP law in early 2017

With oil prices still relatively low, many governments around the Gulf are increasingly looking to the private sector to partner on large-scale infra projects

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Early 2017 could see the introduction of a new law governing the use of public-private partnerships (PPPs) as means of funding 2022 FIFA World Cup projects, a lawyer informed Zawya.

During an interview at the World Future Energy Summit in Abu Dhabi, Tim Armsby, a partner at law firm Eversheds, said: “We have been appointed by the government of Qatar to set up a PPP programme from scratch, including the law.”

When asked to detail the legislation, previously forecast to be passed by the end of 2016, the lawyer added that the government “already has a pipeline identified” and that it would like to issue the law early this year.

Of the $2tn (QAR7.2tn) worth of construction projects presently in the Gulf pipeline – according to Deloitte’s report in May last year – 8.57% is expected to be delivered in Qatar.

While Qatar is spending billions on the 2022 FIFA World Cup and infrastructure upgrades, last year an official at Qatar’s ministry of economy and commerce told Reuters that opportunities existed for private sector involvement in a variety of areas, including a PPP programme to build around a dozen public schools.

Spending in Qatar’s 2017 budget is set to decline from $12.8bn (QAR46.5bn) last year to $5.4bn (QAR28.4bn), according to a report earlier this month by the Qatar National Bank (QNB).

The QNB report stated that capital spending is set to increase by 3.2% in 2017, with the lion’s share made up by transportation and infrastructure set at 21.2% of the budget, followed by health at 12.3% and education at 10.4%.

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