Doha: The natural gas-rich nation Qatar is not showing any sign of hardship despite a month long cut land, sea and air routes from four Arab nations. Grocery stores are loaded with meats and different type of cheeses from Turkey and Europe. The luxurious clothing goods are all available in Qatar.
Lavish meals and alcohol are available 24* 7 for the guests in the luxury hotels such as ‘the W’ and ‘St Regis’. “We don’t feel any difference. It’s a celebration everywhere,” Qatari Badr Jeran said as he shopped at the mall, reports Seatle Times.
Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt in early June had cut ties with Qatar. The nations’ view is Qatar being supportive to terror groups. However, Qatar denied supporting extremism and condemned the closures.
How Qatar tackled the crises:
Shortly after the crisis began, a Twitter account called DohaUnderSiege began documenting life under the blockade. One post showed a fully stocked hotel buffet and said: “Breadlines have begun. Personally saw several middle-aged men at breakfast scuffling over the last baguette.”
The posts point to the fact that Qatar is wealthy. It is one of the world’s richest nations per capita, making its citizens on average wealthier than even those in neighbouring Gulf states.
— Florence Arabia (@FlorenceArabia7) June 19, 2017
— Florence Arabia (@FlorenceArabia7) June 9, 2017
Qatar has some $340 billion in reserves. Around $40 billion of that is in cash plus gold, and $300 billion is in reserves with the Qatar Investment Authority. According to central bank governor Sheikh Abdullah Bin Saoud Al Thani, Qatar’s wealth fund has invested over the years in international luxury brands and real estate in major cities like New York and London.
How does Qatar generate revenue:
A continues flow of natural gas from the gas fields of Qatar, is the main source of its revenue. It is the world’s largest liquefied natural gas producer, which is exported on tankers around the world. The gas pipelines provide gas to Oman and the UAE.
Costs of the goods have increased 10 folds as per the government, which is a result of expensive roundabout routes shipping. So the cost for the shoppers also has increased.
Help from other neighbouring countries:
Instead of Saudi’s Almarai dairy brand, now the shelves are loaded with products from Turkey, Iran and Morocco. Iran has kept its airspace open, allowing Qatar Airways and other airlines to circumvent the closures.
Qatar has invested in the past towards the agriculture, which is too helping it to cope with the crises. Despite the sweltering, arid climate, farmers have found ways to grow organic produce like tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, eggplant and champignon mushrooms inside greenhouses.
New routes have been chosen:
Qatar has launched five new shipping routes — two to Oman, two to India and one to Turkey. Doha’s brand-new Hamad Port, south of the Qatari capital, is operating at “full capacity,” says the port’s director, Abdelaziz Nasser Al-Yafei.
Hamad Port received 212 ships in June, with 24,000 containers, 4,300 cars, 61,000 livestock and 6,400 tons of construction materials. On one evening earlier this month, five large ships docking in Hamad Port unloaded sheep from Australia, food from Turkey and cars made in South Korea.