DOHA, Qatar, Qatar’s economy is expected to achieve an impressive growth of three percent in 2018, despite the unjust siege imposed on the country by neighbouring countries, Minister of Finance, Ali Sherif al Emadi, said.

Speaking at the Euromoney Qatar Conference in Doha, the minister said, Qatar’s economy has shown resilience by remaining a dominant player in the global energy market. Despite the ongoing crisis, he said, Qatar did not miss even a single oil and gas shipment, as promised to its customers.

“Qatar proved it again that, it is one of the most trusted suppliers of LNG in the global market. We are still supplying gas to one of the blockading countries that meets 40 percent of its energy requirement. We never used energy as a weapon to deal with the situation. They are happy with our supply and we are happy with their money,” the minister said.

Emadi said, the country has also taken various measures to support the non-hydrocarbon sector. He said, the state budget for 2018 will focus on developing local industries and the private sector, as the country works to make itself self-sufficient in the face of the boycott.

Despite a rise in oil prices, Emadi said, the country would take a conservative approach to base its budget for 2018 on oil price of $45 a barrel. Emadi said, the government would use subsidies to develop some of the vital sectors like food, health and industry to boost growth.

“Our main focus is to achieve self-sufficiency in food products, especially dairy products. We are marching ahead with our goal to be wholly self-sufficient in dairy products by Jun next year,” he said.

He also announced that the country launched a major poultry farming project last week to meet local demand. “We will soon announce the details of the project,” he said. The minister said that more than 50 factories would be set up in the country next year, to boost manufacturing sector. “Even if our neighbours continue with the siege, we still have a market of over two billion people, within four hours of air travel. We can cater to these markets,” he said.

Source: NAM News Network