UK Firms Eager to Explore Business Opportunities in Qatar

3 Jun 2017

Senior officials from the Qatar Financial Centre (QFC), one of the world's leading and fastest growing onshore business and financial centres, successfully concluded panel discussions, face-to-face consultations and networking events with professionals from UK corporations and private firms in London and Manchester.

The event came as part of QFC's efforts to address the strong historical relationship between the UK and Qatar, and to help companies looking to grow their businesses in the Middle East.

Qatar is the UK's third largest export market in the MENA region. In 2016, UK exports to Qatar amounted to nearly QAR 11.2 billion registering a growth of 21.7% compared to 2014. The Qatari government also has more than QAR 140 billion in investments in the UK, this includes stakes in BAA, Sainsbury's, Barclays, London Stock Exchange, Harrods and The Shard.

Qatar recently announced that it will invest QAR 23.5 billion in the UK economy through various investment funds and relevant parties in Qatar over the next 3-5 years.

Highlights at the roadshows included presentations from senior QFC representatives as well as case studies by companies from the UK that currently have operations in Qatar. Participants also engaged in one-on-one consultation sessions with QFC's leading experts, enabling them to gain a better understanding of the business landscape and advantages of operating businesses in Qatar.

As part of its ongoing collaboration with Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA), QFC representatives also invited attendees to explore the investment opportunities in Qatar's tourism sector, and learn about the support provided to investors by QTA's Tourism Investment Promotion Unit, which works to facilitate access among investors, local and international talent, and government authorities.

Our roadshows in London and Manchester provided the ideal opportunity for UK investors and businesses to discuss investment opportunities in Qatar and get more acquainted with the support we provide our licensed firms to expand globally. Our discussions have been highly beneficial and we are confident that they will positively contribute in further enhancing the relations between Qatar and the UK.

Yousuf Mohamed Al-Jaida, QFC Authority Chief Executive Officer

Qatar has profound confidence in the UK market which has been proven by our ongoing commitment to investing in the region.

Mr. Ali Al Fadh'ala, Counsellor of the State of Qatar to the United Kingdom

As a firm that has had the experience of setting up within the QFC, I can say it has been a very positive journey for us, and has helped our business expand our presence in Qatar and the Middle East.

Peter Blackmore, Partner & Head of Pinsent Masons Doha Office

Yousuf Mohamed Al-Jaida, QFC Authority Chief Executive Officer, said: "Our roadshows in London and Manchester provided the ideal opportunity for UK investors and businesses to discuss investment opportunities in Qatar and get more acquainted with the support we provide our licensed firms to expand globally. Our discussions have been highly beneficial and we are confident that they will positively contribute in further enhancing the relations between Qatar and the UK."

He continued: "Many steps have been taken to open up our economy to foreign firms who can not only bring in investment opportunities to Qatar, but also the knowledge and expertise that are needed for economic diversification."

Commenting following the successful completion of the roadshow Mr Ali Al Fadhala, Counsellor of the State of Qatar to the United Kingdom who was Guest of Honour at the event, added: "Qatar has profound confidence in the UK market which has been proven by our ongoing commitment to investing in the region. Qatar has remained as one of the most stable economies in the world and our ambitions for further development and diversification continues to grow. We are committed to continue working with our friends and partners in the UK to strengthen our economies and the growing ties between us."

Peter Blackmore, Partner & Head of Pinsent Masons Doha Office spoke about his company's experience in setting up through the QFC stating "We were very pleased to take part in the QFC's roadshow in the UK and share our personal success story in Qatar. As a firm that has had the experience of setting up within the QFC, I can say it has been a very positive journey for us, and has helped our business expand our presence in Qatar and the Middle East."

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