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Qatar ranked second best emerging market for business compatibility

Qatar has been ranked the second best among 50 emerging markets (EM) for best business compatibility climate or market compatibility, based on findings in the 2017 Agility EM logistics Index.

The UAE ranked first in market compatibility sub-index, while Oman was ranked third, Bahrain ranked fourth, Saudi Arabia ranked seventh, and Kuwait ranked tenth based on the index. The eighth edition of the index offers an annual snapshot of industry trend and ranks the world’s leading emerging markets based on size, business conditions and transport infrastructure and connections.

Among the top ten markets for compatibility, seven are from the MENA region, in comparison to just five last year. The index carried out a survey of more than 800 global logistics executives.

Although UAE retains its top position for a third consecutive year, with abundance of free trade zones, no corporation tax, offer of complete ownership, unlimited repatriation of profits still sets the benchmark for emerging markets. Agility said that Qatar has more or less halved the gap between itself and the UAE in terms of score, and trade barriers continue to be diminished.

Overall, Qatar ranked 12th in the 2017 index among the Ems, while other GCC nations, including UAE and Saudi Arabia ranked third and fifth respectively.

Within 34 countries with less than $300bn gross domestic product, Qatar ranked third, Oman fourth, Bahrain 10th and Kuwait ranked 12th, while the UAE and Saudi Arabia figured among countries with more than $300bn GDP.
In terms of market connectivity, Qatar ranked 10th, and UAE ranked first, with Saudi Arabia in 5th, Oman in 6th, Bahrain in 7th and Kuwait in 31st position.

As for potential to grow as logistics market in next five years, Qatar ranked 19th in the index among 20 countries, falling from its 16th position in the index in 2016.  The MENA region continues to be a strong performer, and the index said that the most major development in the region focuses on how it would adjust to the ‘new normal’ of low oil prices.

The report said that despite the possibility of a new OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries) deal likely to happen this year, low oil prices have surely had a major impact across the region, forcing governments to diversify their economies and introduce fresh methods for revenue collection. Stiff competition in the region will also be a feature of the economic diversification process, it said.

Commenting about Qatar, Agility said, the energy exposure is mainly on the natural gas side, so that the decline in oil prices have had only limited impact here.

Having bagged the 2022 FIFA World Cup, Qatar is now focused on hosting international sporting events as it plans to boost its tourism sector, it said, highlighting Qatar’s plans for the World Cup involving $70bn worth of projects.

Posted on 26/1/2017

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