Qatar tourist arrivals to reach 1.8 million by 2014

Guest Writer

Tourist arrivals to Qatar are forecast to reach 1.8 million in 2014, with the number of business visits increasing at an average annual rate of 11.9% over 2009-2014, a study by Euromonitor International has found
The Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) estimates that 40 new hotels and around 7,000 rooms will open between 2010 and 2011 and that European business visitors represent the biggest growth potential to meet supply.
Qatar’s tourist industry could therefore be hampered by economic troubles in Europe, the study found.
Euromonitor said that at present, large Qatari companies and financing vehicles were looking to invest in the tourism sector, which will enable its growth.
In addition, earlier this year, the government implemented a law removing the 49% limit to allow full foreign ownership in tourism and other sectors, which should help increase foreign direct investment in the country.
Another boost to arrivals to the state is that in April, the government suspended plans to impose strict visa requirements on the citizens of 33 countries including the UK and USA after objections from airlines and other tourism businesses.

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