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Qatar awards tourism contracts worth US$2.5 billion in 2014
More than US$2.5 billion worth of contracts were awarded in Qatar's tourism sector during 2014 as the Gulf state looks to build more hotels in the run-up to hosting the FIFA World Cup in 2022.
Projects to the value of US$8.48 billion are currently underway in the Arabian Gulf nation tat will set Qatar up as a major tourist and venue attraction, including Doha Festival City, Doha Convention Centre, Rayyan Mall (Mall of Qatar), Doha Zoo, Lusail Museum, and Katara Towers (Lusail Marina).
The total number of projects planned or underway include five museums and libraries; 57 hotels and resorts; 22 shopping venues; 21 sports facilities; 11 theme parks, six convention centres; and a state-of-the-art theatre.
Qatar saw 2.8 million visitors enter the country in 2014, an 8.2% increase in numbers over the previous year, generating 61,000 jobs in the tourism sector and an economic injection of $7.6 billion, equal to 8.3% of Qatar's non-extraction GDP, according to Middle Eastern news agency IFPinfo.
According to the Qatar Tourism Authority, in 2014, 40% of Qatar’s visitors came from other Gulf Cooperation Council countries, 15% from European countries and 28% from Asia and Oceania.
Hotel occupancy rates increased to an average of 73% in 2014, with five-star properties enjoying the lion's share of visitors, and hoteliers in 2015 are expecting those numbers to rise further.
Commenting on the growth, Arabian Travel Market Exhibition Manager, Nadege Noblet stated "Qatar has witnessed astounding economic growth over the past decade, and this has translated into a healthy tourism sector focused on culture, shopping, sporting events, meetings and exhibitions.
"The recent completion of important infrastructure projects, such as the iconic Hamad International Airport in 2014 and Qatar Airways' plans to significantly expand its capacity across Europe this year, has confirmed Qatar's position as an important travel and tourism hub for the region, which ATM 2015 is keen to highlight."
Image shows the Qatar Museum of Islamic Art.
5th May 2015 - CALL FOR FURTHER INVESTMENT IN QATAR’S MUSEUMS
13th December 2014 - ARABIAN GULF STATES AIM TO BOOST TOURISM WITH NEW INTEGRATED STRATEGY
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