Qatar made a comprehensive leap in the industrial sector over the past three years, where the volume of investments has reached over QR262bn. The rise in investments contributed to the state’s ability to face challenges, maintain the stability of the local market and boost exports, said the Assistant Undersecretary for Industry Affairs at the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MoCI) Mohammed Hassan Al Malki, yesterday.
Al Malki said in an interview with Qatar News Agency (QNA) that the past three years have posed a real challenge to both extractive and manufacturing aspects of the industrial sector, which has succeeded greatly in consolidating its pillars and establishing its bases to play its central role in the economic growth of the state.
He said that the state has dealt intelligently with the unjust blockade imposed on it since mid-2017, and managed to turn this crisis into an opportunity to accelerate its plans in the development of the industrial sector and maintaining economic growth.
The state has dealt intelligently with this situation, addressed weaknesses in the industrial sector and turned them into strengths, which has led to the success of this sector in covering many of the market needs of industrial products, especially food and pharmaceutical products, which have become competitive with those in the region and the world, he added.
Al Malki pointed out that the volume of investments in the industrial sector has now reached QR262bn, up from QR255bn in 2017, registering a growth of nearly 3 percent over the past three years.
“Investment growth in the industrial sector continues, and we have a clear strategy for the coming years covering a number of vital sectors, reinforced by important regulatory and legislative reforms in the business environment,” he added.
He said that the number increased to 893 factories in the current year from 765 factories in 2017, an increase of approximately 17 percent, he said adding, focus over the past three years has been on the food industries, which has made a major leap and contributed to securing the market needs from the necessary goods.
On the industrial sectors, the Assistant Undersecretary explained that the construction and transport industries sector tops list due to its association with 2022 World Cup projects, with 249 factories (27.9 percent of the total factories in the country), followed by the chemical and petrochemical industries, with 231 industrial establishments assisted by the abundance of raw materials (25.9 percent of the total number of factories).
He said that the cement and building materials sector, and due to the urbanization witnessed by the state, ranks third with 178 factories, accounting for nearly 20 percent of the total number of factories, then the food and beverage industry sectors , which has 80 factories, accounting for 9 percent of the total number of factories in manufacturing industries.
Al Malki attributed the growth in the industrial sector during the past years to improving many investment laws and increasing the facilities provided to investors, in addition to enhancing private sector’s infrastructure, and addressing many of the challenges facing the local and foreign investor, besides other factors that strengthened the Industrial investment.
He pointed out that Ministry of Commerce and Industry offers a variety of facilities, including those related to providing industrial lands, customs exemptions on raw materials, equipment and machinery, a preference for electricity pricing, and providing integrated services and advanced infrastructure of electricity, water, sanitation and others. “There is a great direct support for the industrial investor, and last year we exempted factories from the rental fees for a full year and more than 400 factories benefited from them, whether in the industrial zone that belongs to the ministry or Manateq company’s Mesaieed industrial area,” he added.
He added: “The manufacturing industries strategy aims to form a map for the next ten years until 2030, Technology part is an important part of this strategy, as the industry today depends mainly on it.”
He stressed that great attention is given to the technological industries sector, which enhances the successes and achieving the goals set in the industrial strategy. “We hope to reach our goals by 2030, especially with attention given by the government to this sector,” he said.