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14 December 2009 02:41 pm

Population moving away from Doha

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Qatar’s development boom is altering its demographics and population distribution pattern in a big way, according to ‘Qatar population 2009’, a compilation of data released by the Qatar Permanent Population Committee. The study says Qatar’s population has multiplied 14 times since the 1970s. The rural areas had the maximum concentration of population during the ’60s and the ’70s, but the rural folk started migrating to urban areas in the ’80s. However, the country is now witnessing a reverse trend: There has been an increasing tendency to move away from Doha to the interiors, the study says. According to 2007 data, an estimated 82 percent of Qatar’s population was concentrated in the greater Doha area. However, since then more and more people have been moving into the suburbs, the report says. The last four decades have also witnessed a sharp decline in Qatar’s mortality rate. The mortality rate had come down to 1.25 per 1,000 in 2007 from 4.2 per 1,000 in 1970. The country’s infant mortality rate has also come down considerably over this period. The infant mortality rate in 1981 was 17.24 per 1,000. It had come down to 7.46 per 1,000 in 2007. Likely because of the massive presence of single expatriate men, the data show a steep decline in Qatar’s birth rate, which had come down to 12.8 per 1,000 in 2007 from 32.6 per 1,000 in 1970. However, the study says, Qatari women have the highest fertility rate in the GCC region.