A top official has allayed fears expressed in certain quarters that the plethora of projects currently on in Doha would suffer due to the lack of utilities and infrastructure.
"The government makes every effort to ensure that the planning for utilities takes place at the same time as the planning for construction, but regrettably some companies go ahead without informing the authorities of their likely completion date. This is sadly a common problem in Qatar," said Haidar Abdulreda Mashhadi, Managing Director, Al Madar Group, in an interview published by The Report: Qatar 2008, the latest of the annual business publications from Oxford Business Group (OBG).
"With the number and scale of projects going on, we all have to focus on this problem," he said. "However, the population of Qatar has grown extremely quickly in the last three to four years to 1.45m, so this is certainly a problem that has to be solved.” Mashhadi, reviewing the housing market in terms of prices and supply, asserted that problems arise due to high demand in certain areas.
"Additionally, a number of areas of land that are now set aside for foreigners have been bought for investment purposes, and in some cases sold on quickly," he said.
"We have an open market now and prices are increasing. It will be several years before the prices of housing begin to plateau and be ruled by simple supply and demand,” he added. "The catalyst will be the availability of suitable land for the middle-income bracket. I think there is a high demand and a lot of potential. We are seeing these kinds of developments on the outskirts of Doha, especially villa-type dwellings. Qatar has a good strategy to cater for a variety of incomes."
The interview with Mashhadi, published in The Report, is one of a series of exclusive interviews with key officials and business leaders in what is considered the most extensive, independent, unbiased and authoritative review of Qatar.
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