Qatar and Japan can synergies relationships in non hydrocarbon sector, said Dr R Seetharaman, CEO of Doha Bank. Speaking at a customer meet on ‘Bilateral Opportunities between Japan and GCC’, he said Qatar and Japan's bilateral trade exceeded $17bn in 2015.
“Amidst low oil prices, Qatar and Japan can synergize relationships in non- hydrocarbon sector,” said Dr R Seetharaman. “Qatar’s foray into the global LNG market was realized with the shipment of the first output from a Qatar gas plant in October 1996 to Japan’s Chubu Electric Power.In Sept 2016, Japan and Qatar agreed to strengthen security relations between the two countries ,” he added.
Dr Seetharaman said Japanese companies are broadly engaged in the construction of infrastructure projects in preparation for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. GCC projects in execution in 2016 is more than $39bn out of which Qatar had projects worth more than $12bn.
He also stressed very high respects to Japan from GCC in relation with world top class Japanese technology and engineering capabilities on non-hydrocarbon sectors promising in GCC onward.
Japanese construction companies have been awarded contracts worth more than $2.1bn in the last 10 years in Qatar.
“Qatar has budgeted for revenues of QR156bn and expenditures of QR202.5bn in 2016 and post a deficit of QR46.5bn. Health, education and infrastructure are the major areas which are going to give thrust by Qatar this year. Major infrastructure expenditures, would include railways, the new Doha port, several large roadways and the expansion of electricity, water and sewage networks,” he said.
“The government came up with $9bn bond issue this year. The government is also taking steps to increase nonoil revenues, focusing on indirect taxes and levies. Qatar has increased stamp duty and plans to levy additional taxes on alcohol, tobacco and energy drinks starting in 2017. Qatar plans to start applying VAT (Value Added Tax) in 2018. Non hydrocarbon as a percent of real GDP will increase from 51.6 percent in 2016 to 54.4 percent of real GDP,” he added.