Qatar's economy is one of the richest economies in the world based on GDP per capita, ranking between fifth and seventh on world rankings for 2015 and 2016 data compiled by the World Bank, United Nations, and IMF.
Petroleum and natural gas are the cornerstones of Qatar's economy and account for more than 70% of total government revenue, more than 60% of gross domestic product, and roughly 85% of export earnings. Qatar has the world's third largest proven natural gas reserve and is the second-largest exporter of natural gas.
|Economy of Qatar|
|GDP||$193.622 billion (nominal; 2018)|
$365.781 billion[ (PPP; 2018)
|3.6% (2015), 2.2% (2016), |
1.6% (2017e), 2.8% (2018f) 
GDP per capita
|$108,786 (nominal; 2017)|
GDP by sector
|Agriculture: 0.2%; Industry: 50.3%; Services: 49.5% (2017 est.)|
|0.9% (2017 est.)|
Population below poverty line
|1.953 million (2017 est.)|
|Unemployment||0.6% (2017 est.)|
|Exports||$86.51 billion (2018 est.)|
|Liquefied Natural Gas, Petroleum Products, Fertilizers, Steel|
Main export partners
| Japan 20% |
South Korea 15.5%
Singapore 5.3% (2016)
|Imports||$26.69 billion (2017 est.)|
|Machinery and Transport Equipment, Food, Chemicals|
Main import partners
| United States 13.7% |
United Kingdom 5.5%
Italy 4.4% (2016)
Gross external debt
|$168 billion (31 December 2017 est.)|
|56.8% of GDP (2017 est.)|
|Revenues||$95.35 billion (2018 est.)|
|Expenses||$55.81 billion (2018 est.)|
|Standard & Poor's:|
AA+ (T&C Assessment)
Before the emergence of petrol-based industry, Qatar was a poor pearl diving country. The exploration of oil and gas fields began in 1939. In 1973, oil production and revenues increased dramatically, moving Qatar out of the ranks of the world's poorest countries and providing it with one of the highest per capita incomes in the world.
Qatar's economy was in a downturn from 1982 to 1989. OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries) quotas on crude oil production, the lower price for oil, and the generally unpromising outlook on international markets reduced oil earnings. In turn, the Qatari government's spending plans had to be cut to match lower income. The resulting recessionary local business climate caused many firms to lay off expatriate staff. With the economy recovering in the 1990s, expatriate populations, particularly from Egypt and South Asia, have grown again.
Oil production will not long remain at peak levels of 500,000 barrels (80,000 m³) per day, as oil fields are projected to be mostly depleted by 2023. However, large natural gas reserves have been located off Qatar's northeast coast. These offshore gas fields also may contain significant oil and condensate reserves. For example, the state owned Qatar Petroleum found 2 offshore oil fields in the 1960s. Back then production was too expensive. However, technological development led to production over 30 years later.
The gas condensate can be refined to usual oil products in specialised refineries. The costs are a bit higher but it is normal today for companies to use the gas condensate too. Oil offshore production in 2008 for PS-2 and PS-3 blocks was about 31.1 million barrels (84,995 b/d). Joint Ventures facilities (PS-1, ALK, K & A): Combined oil production from these three joint venture production facilities in 2008 was 57.4 million barrels (156,873 b/d). Like with gas fields there are more offshore blocks which need to be explored and could increase the oil output. So the 500,000 bpd peak and a depletion in 2023 is delayed. With higher oil prices it is expected that the offshore exploration of oil and/or natural gas fields will go on. Oil production in June 2016 seemed to be around 670,000 barrels per day, a bit down from February 2016 production of 692,000 barrels per day. Taking all liquids together Qatar is already far beyond a million barrels per day.
Qatar's proved reserves of gas are the third-largest in the world, exceeding 7000 km³ (250 trillion cubic feet). The economy was boosted in 1991 by completion of the $1.5-billion Phase I of North Field gas development. In 1996, the Qatargas project began exporting liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Japan. Further phases of North Field gas development costing billions of dollars are in various stages of planning and development.
Qatar's heavy industrial projects, all based in Umm Said, include a refinery with a 50,000 barrels (8,000 m³) per day capacity, a fertilizer plant for urea and ammonia, a steel plant, and a petrochemical plant. All these industries use gas for fuel. Most are joint ventures between European and Japanese firms and the state-owned Qatar General Petroleum Corporation (QGPC). The U.S. is the major equipment supplier for Qatar's oil and gas industry, and U.S. companies are playing a major role in North Field gas development. 890- Qatar pursues a vigorous program of "Qatarization", under which all joint venture industries and government departments strive to move Qatari nationals into positions of greater authority. Growing numbers of foreign-educated Qataris, including many educated in the U.S., are returning home to assume key positions formerly occupied by expatriates. In order to control the influx of expatriate workers, Qatar has tightened the administration of its foreign manpower programs over the past several years. Security is the principal basis for Qatar's strict entry and immigration rules and regulations.
The government considers industry to be an integral part of its plan to diversify the economy and maximize its huge natural gas reserves, which serve as the primary feedstock for the sector. Accordingly, careful planning has gone into industrial development. With an eye towards exports, development has been clustered around the ports of Ras Laffan Industrial City and Mesaieed Industrial Area, which are key centers of energy. The result has seen considerable growth over the years. Industries Qatar (IQ), a producer of petrochemicals, fertilizers and steel, is a regional powerhouse, surpassed only in size by Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC), the Middle East’s largest chemical producer. In 2007 the manufacturing sector made the third-largest contribution to GDP among non-oil and gas sectors, equivalent to about 7.5% of GDP.
Petrochemicals and fertilizers supply make up a large portion of the industrial base, along with steel and other construction materials, through Qatar Steel and Qatar Primary Material Company (QPMC). Indeed, over the past few years, demand for construction materials experienced a major surge as the development boom swept the Persian Gulf region. But the global financial crisis has put a significant dent in demand in the region, as project credit lines dry up and investor sentiment remains cautious. The crisis has in fact impacted the whole of the industrial sector – IQ saw its net profit drop in the fourth quarter of 2008 more than 90% over the same period the previous year. But in relative terms, the sector has fared better than most and IQ still managed to post an annual profit of $2bn. Large profit chunks from years past have been channeled into capital investments, which should help the sector ride out the storm. IQ, for example, is pushing several major expansion projects, worth almost $6bn, ahead. Qatar is expected to be one of the fastest growing economies in 2009 – the hope is it will be enough to keep the industrial sector on an upward trajectory.
The Qatari banking sector managed to escape the direct impact of the global subprime fallout, but was not altogether unscathed by its aftershocks. Overall, it was the best performing of the Gulf Cooperation Council markets in the last quarter of 2008 and most banks posted substantial profits for 2008. But the sector is also facing issues of liquidity, declining customer confidence and a forced reluctance to lend. In a bid to strengthen the banks’ positions, the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) announced in early 2009 that it was willing to take a 10-20% stake in any interested local listed banks by way of a capital injection, although this was later reduced to 5% stakes and an additional 5% at the end of 2009.
The Qatari government also announced in March 2009 that it was planning to buy the investment portfolio of the banks in the hope this would encourage them to continue lending. Cautious sector sentiment has also been compounded by the Qatar Central Bank’s (QCB’s) lending restrictions, which demand a loan-to-deposit ratio of 90%. Given the high level of integration between Qatar’s economy and the Persian Gulf region, as well as the wider world, a slowdown in business and banking activity seemed inevitable. Nevertheless, Qatar’s banking sector has been faring relatively well, considering the strife experienced in other countries, and insiders are confident that activity will return to its previous brisk pace in the second half of 2009 as confidence slowly rebuilds around the globe.
The Islamic finance sector enjoyed increased activity in 2008 and is expected to continue to grow into 2009 as more sophisticated financial instruments spark the interest of investors. In addition to Islamic banks, such as Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB), Qatar International Islamic Bank (QIIB) and newcomer Masraf Al Rayyan, conventional banks have also been entering the sharia-compliant sector and are coming to view an Islamic subsidiary as a virtual necessity in order to maintain market standing. Islamic banks currently take the lion’s share of sharia-compliant business, though the conventional banks are working hard to take a greater share of market activity. Both Islamic banks and Islamic subsidiaries did remarkably well in the first three quarters of 2008, during which overall financing activity increased by 70.6% compared to the same period in the previous year. The global financial crisis slowed this growth though. Poor market conditions have contributed to a marked slowdown of Islamic bond, or sukuk, activity in 2008 throughout the Persian Gulf. But other segments, such as Islamic insurance, or takaful, have not seen a similar downturn. Overall, challenges to further growth remain, including a lack of qualified staff to meet the growing demand for sharia-compliant banking services.
The stock market capitalisation of listed companies in Qatar was valued at $95,487 million in 2007 by the World Bank. As 2008 drew to a close, no capital markets around the globe, including Qatar's, were immune to the effects of the sub-prime fallout. That said, there is considerable optimism that Qatar's bourse, the Doha Securities Market (DSM), will remain relatively resilient to the ongoing international turbulence. It has followed the same peak-trough trajectory as many others around the globe, hitting record highs in mid-2008, before diving in late 2008 and early 2009. Between December 2006 and July 2008 the DSM Index rose about 117% before the global financial crisis wiped out most of these gains. In the first few months of 2009, the DSM lost about 40% of its value. In an effort to stave off further losses, the government announced in February 2009 that it would step in to buy up shares of troubled banks amounting to about 10% of the market's capitalisation. The move improved investor optimism and is hoped to prevent the market from falling further. The proposal to create a single unified regulator as early as 2010 to oversee all banking and financial services is viewed as another promising development that will transform the financial sector for the better.
Under the ambitious five-year development plan of the Qatar Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (QTEA), the government aimed to boost the number of visitors from 964,000 as of 2007 to 1.5m by 2010. The funding required to meet this goal was present in sufficient amounts; in 2008 the state allocated some $17bn for tourism development through 2014, most of which was allocated towards hotels, exhibition space and infrastructure. In order to keep up with a rising number of visitors, the government set a goal of increasing hotel capacity 400% by 2012. In addition to financial support, the government has also worked to ease business regulations in a bid to increase private sector activity. A major aspect of expansion plans is the Hamad International Airport, which will have the capacity to handle up to 24m passengers upon the completion of the first phase in 2012.
Other niche tourism segments receiving special focus include cultural tourism on the back of the high publicity opening of Doha’s Museum of Islamic Art, and sports tourism, initially spurred by the Asian Games, to which Qatar played host in 2006. The government appears to be committed to long-term expansion plans, but challenges nevertheless remain, including effective marketing to the international community as well as the effect of the financial crisis on global tourism appetite.
With a fast-expanding population and substantial economic growth over the past decade, a reliable and extensive transportation network is becoming increasingly necessary within Qatar. So far the government, the primary transport developer, has done well in terms of keeping up with demand for new transportation options. In 2008 the Public Works Authority (Ashghal), one of the bodies that oversees infrastructure development, underwent a major reorganisation in order to streamline and modernise the authority in preparation for major project expansions across all segments in the near future. Ashghal works in tandem with the Urban Planning and Development Authority (UPDA), the body that designed the transportation master plan, instituted in March 2006 and running to 2025.
As driving is the primary mode of transport in Qatar, the road network is a major focus of the plan. Project highlights in this segment include the multibillion-dollar Doha Expressway and the Qatar Bahrain Causeway, which will connect Qatar to Bahrain and Saudi Arabia and is considered a milestone in regional interconnectivity. Mass-transit options, such as a Doha metro, light-rail system and more extensive bus networks, are also under development to ease road congestion. In addition, the railway system is being significantly expanded and could eventually form an integral part of a GCC-wide network linking all the Arab states of the Persian Gulf. The airport, too, is expanding capacity to keep up with rising visitor numbers. The New Doha International Airport is one of the largest projects in Qatar today and will boast a capacity of 50m passengers upon completion in 2015. Finally, port infrastructure is seen as an integral part of Qatar's economic development as it focuses on LNG and industrial exports. The port at Mesaieed is undergoing expansion. While the financial crisis may present challenges to infrastructure development, once all projects are completed Qatar will have one of the most advanced and modern transport infrastructures in the region.
Qatar is now the richest country in the world, on a per person basis. Current GDP per capita registered a world record-breaking peak growth of 1,156% in the 70s. This became quickly unsustainable and Qatar's current GDP per capita contracted 53% in the 80s. But rising global oil demand helped current GDP per capita to expand 94% in the 90s. Diversification is still a long-term issue for this over-exposed economy.
|Year||Gross Domestic Product||US Dollar Exchange||Inflation Index
|Per Capita Income|
(as % of USA)
|1980||28,631||3.65 Qatari Riyals||53||266.18|
|1985||22,829||3.63 Qatari Riyals||64||104.82|
|1990||26,792||3.64 Qatari Riyals||77||67.85|
|1995||29,622||3.63 Qatari Riyals||85||55.75|
|2000||64,646||3.63 Qatari Riyals||100||86.03|
|2005||137,784||3.64 Qatari Riyals||115||127.05|
For purchasing power parity comparisons only, the US Dollar is exchanged at 3.67 Qatari Riyals. Mean wages were $59.99 per man-hour in 2009.
In February 2012, the International Bank of Qatar reported that GDP grew by 19.9% in 2011, but estimated that 2012 growth would slow to 9.8%
The following table shows the main economic indicators in 1980–2017. Inflation below 2 % is in green.
(in Bil. US$ PPP)
|GDP per capita
(in US$ PPP)
(in % of GDP)
|1980||17.63||72,061||−1.0 %||6.8 %||n/a|
|1981||18.5||69,897||−3.9 %||8.5 %||n/a|
|1982||18.1||63,271||−8.2 %||5.7 %||n/a|
|1983||17.8||58,114||−5.3 %||2.7 %||n/a|
|1984||21.3||65,435||16.0 %||1.1 %||n/a|
|1985||19.2||55,602||−13.0 %||1.1 %||n/a|
|1986||20.3||56,008||3.7 %||1.9 %||n/a|
|1987||21.0||55,604||0.9 %||4.5 %||n/a|
|1988||22.7||57,909||4.7 %||4.5 %||n/a|
|1989||24.9||60,973||5.3 %||4.8 %||n/a|
|1990||22.0||46,184||−14.6 %||3.3 %||10.7 %|
|1991||22.4||46,095||−1.7 %||3.0 %||17.6 %|
|1992||25.5||52,008||11.3 %||4.4 %||16.6 %|
|1993||25.7||52,284||−1.3 %||−0.9 %||37.5 %|
|1994||26.6||53,814||1.4 %||1.5 %||44.2 %|
|1995||27.9||55,576||2.4 %||3.0 %||42.3 %|
|1996||29.6||57,761||4.4 %||7.0 %||49.5 %|
|1997||39.1||73,926||30.0 %||2.7 %||48.0 %|
|1998||44.0||79,960||11.2 %||2.8 %||63.4 %|
|1999||46.6||81,438||4.3 %||2.2 %||74.4 %|
|2000||51.5||86,713||8.0 %||1.6 %||52.5 %|
|2001||54.7||89,419||4.0 %||1.6 %||59.1 %|
|2002||59.5||94,540||2.5 %||0.2 %||47.6 %|
|2003||63.0||95,393||3.7 %||2.2 %||39.0 %|
|2004||77.2||107,098||19.2 %||6.8 %||29.0 %|
|2005||85.6||104,243||7.5 %||8.9 %||19.2 %|
|2006||111.3||115,048||26.2 %||11.8 %||13.4 %|
|2007||134.8||117,000||18.0 %||13.7 %||8.9 %|
|2008||161.8||104,116||17.7 %||15.1 %||11.1 %|
|2009||182.5||111,364||12.0 %||−4.9 %||32.4 %|
|2010||218.2||127,226||18.1 %||−2.4 %||29.1 %|
|2011||252.5||145,724||13.4 %||2.0 %||33.5 %|
|2012||269.2||146,872||4.9 %||1.8 %||32.1 %|
|2013||285.6||142,543||4.4 %||3.2 %||30.9 %|
|2014||302.3||136,409||4.0 %||3.4 %||24.9 %|
|2015||316.4||129,805||3.6 %||1.8 %||34.9 %|
|2016||327.6||125,159||2.2 %||2.7 %||46.5 %|
|2017||340.6||124,529||2.1 %||0.4 %||54.0 %|
The General Secretariat for Development Planning (GSDP) (Arabic: الأمانة العامة للتخطيط التنموي) is a governmental agency in the State of Qatar, established through an Emiri Decision No (39) in 2006 and amended by Emiri Decision No (50) in 2009. The GSDP coordinates plans, strategies and policies in support of Qatar's National Vision 2030.
The Secretariat reports to the Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani, the Heir Apparent to the Qatar Emirate. On June 7, 2011, the Deputy Emir and Heir Apparent Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani issued the Emiri Decision No 36 of 2011, appointing Dr. Saleh Mohammad Al Nabit as Secretary General of the General Secretariat for Development Planning.
Following the Council Ministers' decision No (11) 2009 the General Secretariat for Development Planning hase supervision over the Permanent Population Committee (Arabic: اللجنة الدائمة للسكان) and is independent in its technical works. The committee has a budget attached to that of the GSDP.International rankings of Qatar
The following are international rankings of Qatar.List of Qatar-related topics
This is a list of topics related to Qatar. Those interested in the subject can monitor changes to the pages by clicking on Related changes in the sidebar.List of banks in Qatar
This is a list of banks in Qatar. 'Doha Bank'List of companies of Qatar
Qatar is a sovereign country located in Western Asia, occupying the small Qatar Peninsula on the northeastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula. Oil was discovered in Qatar in 1940, in Dukhan Field. The discovery transformed the state's economy. Now, the country has a high standard of living for its legal citizens. With no income tax, Qatar (along with Bahrain) is one of the countries with the lowest tax rates in the world. The unemployment rate in June 2013 was 0.1%. Corporate law mandates that Qatari nationals must hold 51% of any venture in the Emirate. In January 2018 a new draft law was approved by the Council of Ministers that would allow 100 percent foreign investment in all economic and commercial activities and sectors to help foreign capital inflow.Mayhoola for Investments
Mayhoola for Investments LLC
is an investment entity incorporated under the laws of the State of Qatar, and located in 36th Floor at Tornado Tower, West Bay, P.O Box: 656, Doha – Qatar.
Mayhoola is a Qatari Company focus on local and global investments.
investment fund.Outline of Qatar
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to Qatar:
The State of Qatar is a sovereign Arab emirate located in Southwest Asia on the Qatari Peninsula protruding from the northeasterly coast of the much larger Arabian Peninsula. It is bordered by Saudi Arabia to the south; otherwise the Persian Gulf surrounds the state.Qatar Central Bank
The Qatar Central Bank (Arabic: مصرف قطر المركزي) is the central bank of Qatar.
The Qatar Central Bank was originally the Qatar Monetary Agency (and was known before that as Qatar Dubai Currency Board), founded on May 13, 1973 after Dubai joined the United Arab Emirates and disengaged itself from British monetary policy which the area had previously followed. The Qatar Monetary Agency assumed the duties of a central bank. In 1973, Amiri Decree No. 24 authorized the issuance of the Qatari Riyal (QR).Over its history the Qatar Central Bank has increasingly worked in association with other, larger central banks to achieve a stable currency for the country, most recently and notably with the Monetary Authority of Singapore.Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry
The Qatar Chamber (Arabic: غرفة قطر) was founded in 1963 as the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Arabic: غرفة تجارة وصناعة قطر) to promote and protect the interests of companies in the agricultural, industrial and commercial sectors of the economy of the country.:143 It also provides administrative services, advice and arbitration. It is a member of the Indo-Arab Chamber of Commerce and Industries.Qatar Financial Centre
The Qatar Financial Centre Authority (QFC Authority) is a business and financial centre located in Doha, providing legal and business infrastructure for financial services. It was established in March 2005. As of September 2015, the CEO is Yousuf Al Jaida.The Qatar Financial Centre provides financial institutions with a world class financial services platform situated in an economy founded on the development of its hydrocarbons resources. It has been created with a long-term perspective to support the development of Qatar and the wider region, develop local and regional markets, and strengthen the links between the energy based economies and global financial markets.Qatar Investment Authority
The Qatar Investment Authority (Arabic: جهاز قطر للإستثمار) (QIA) is Qatar's state-owned holding company that can be characterised as a National Wealth Fund. It specialises in domestic and foreign investment. The QIA was founded by the State of Qatar in 2005 to strengthen the country's economy by diversifying into new asset classes. The fund is a member of the International Forum of Sovereign Wealth Funds, and is therefore a signatory of the Santiago Principles on best practice in managing sovereign wealth funds.Qatar National Vision 2030
Qatar National Vision 2030 (Arabic: رؤية قطر الوطنية 2030; abbreviated as QNV 2030) is a development plan launched in October 2008 by the General Secretariat for Development Planning in the State of Qatar. The aim of QNV 2030 is to "transform Qatar into an advanced society capable of achieving sustainable development" by 2030. The plan's development goals are divided into four central pillars: economic, social, human and environmental development. The government seeks to meet development goals by developing a strong bureaucratic framework and implementing strategies to address the challenges presented in human development reports.Qatar Tourism Authority
Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) (Arabic: الهيئة العامة للسياحة), a branch of the Government of Qatar, is the apex body responsible for the formulation and administration of the rules, regulations and laws relating to the development and promotion of tourism in Qatar. This ministry is responsible for tourist attractions and accommodations for travelers, to expand and diversify of Qatar's tourism industry, as well as building up the role of tourism in the GDP of the country and its future growth and social development.QTA’s work is guided by the Qatar National Tourism Sector Strategy 2030 (QNTSS), published in February 2014, to set out a plan for the industry’s future development.Qatari riyal
The Qatari riyal is the currency of the State of Qatar. It is divided into 100 dirhams (Arabic: درهم) and is abbreviated as either QR (English) or ر.ق (Arabic).Qatarization
Qatarization (or Qatarisation) is a governmental initiative devised to increase the number of Qatari citizens employed in public and private sectors. The target is 50% of the workforce in the Industry and Energy sector. Qatarization is one of the focuses of the Qatar National Vision 2030.While the expatriate population has rapidly grown since the late 20th century, the Qatari population has increased only at a marginal rate. Therefore, as a means to decrease dependence on foreign labor, the Qatari government has heavily prioritized Qatarization in recent years.Trade unions in Qatar
Qatar has been a member of the International Labour Organization since 1972, but has not ratified the Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to Organise Convention, 1948, or the Right to Organise and Collective Bargaining Convention, 1949.
Trade unions were outlawed by the government in 1957 in response to a large number of recurrent strikes being carried out by workers in the Qatar Petroleum Company. In May, 2004, the Emir ruled that workers were allowed to form trade unions and professional associations. Additional reforms saw the right to strike, a ban on employment of youths under 16, an eight-hour working day, and equal labour rights for women legislated as part of a general reform process in Qatar. The International Transport Workers' Federation and the International Trade Union Confederation have alleged that the Qatari government fails to enforce its 2004 labor law on a consistent basis, with the former criticizing Qatar Airways' treatment of its female employees, and the latter challenging Qatar's treatment of migrant workers.