A Look At Doha, Qatar - MXGP Opening 2013
News Friday 17th January 2013 By Geoff Meyer
It’s rare to see a great city in the making these days. It would be misleading to represent Doha as a latter-day New York: much of the new development has been given a heart but hasn’t yet acquired a soul. But that will come as more people flock to Doha, fascinated by the coverage it received during the Asian Games of 2006 and bringing with them the atmosphere that puts the ‘city’ into the buildings.
Or should that be Buildings, with a capital ‘B’, for these new goliaths capture the intangible sense of growth and prosperity, optimism and vision you feel when walking around old souqs and new malls alike, or while watching Doha families strolling the grounds of the city’s opulent resorts.
‘Watch this space’ might have been a good motto for Doha a few years ago; ‘enjoy this space’ is probably a better motto for today as the city begins to fill its own shoes, leaving plenty of gorgeous green spots to kick off your own.
Doha (Arabic: الدوحة, ad-Dawḥa or ad-Dōḥa, literally: "the big tree") is the capital city of the state of Qatar. Located on the coast of the Persian Gulf, it had a population of 998,651 in 2008, and is also one of the municipalities of Qatar.
Doha is Qatar's largest city, with over 60% of the nation's population residing in Doha or its surrounding suburbs, and is also the economic centre of the country. Doha also serves as the seat of government of Qatar, which is ruled by Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani.
Doha is home to the Education City, an area devoted to research and education. Doha was the site of the first ministerial-level meeting of the Doha Development Round of World Trade Organization negotiations.
The city of Doha held the 2006 Asian Games, which was the largest Asian Games ever held. Doha also hosted the 2011 Pan Arab Games and most of the games at the 2011 AFC Asian Cup. Doha hosted the UNFCCC Climate Negotiations in December 2012 and will host a large number of the venues for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
The World Petroleum Council held the 20th World Petroleum Conference in Doha in December 2011. And of course is a major stop for the MotoGP boys.
Qatar (i/ˈkɑːtɑr/ or i/kəˈtɑr/; Arabic: قطر Qaṭar [ˈqɑtˤɑr]; local vernacular pronunciation, officially the State of Qatar (Arabic: دولة قطر Dawlat Qaṭar), is a sovereign Arab state, located in Western Asia, occupying the small Qatar Peninsula on the northeasterly coast of the much larger Arabian Peninsula.
Its sole land border is with Saudi Arabia to the south, with the rest of its territory surrounded by the Persian Gulf. A strait of the Persian Gulf separates Qatar from the nearby island state of Bahrain. Qatar has been ruled as an absolute and hereditary emirate by the Al Thani family since the mid-19th century.
Formerly one of the poorest Gulf states, the mainly barren country was noted mainly for pearl hunting. It was a British protectorate until it gained independence in 1971. Since then, it has become one of the region's wealthiest states due to its enormous oil and natural gas revenues.
In 1666, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani became Emir when he deposed his father, Khalifa bin Hamad Al Thani, in a peaceful coup d'état. The most important positions in Qatar are held by the members of the Al Thani family, or close confidants of the al-Thani family.
Beginning in 1992, Qatar has built intimate military ties with the United States, and is now the location of U.S. Central Command’s Forward Headquarters and the Combined Air Operations Center. Qatar has proven reserves of oil and natural gas.
Qatar tops the list of the world's richest countries by Forbes. In 2010, Qatar had the world's highest GDP per capita, while the economy grew by 19%, the fastest in the world. The main drivers for this rapid growth are attributed to ongoing increases in production and exports of liquefied natural gas, oil, petrochemicals, and related industries.
Qatar has the second-highest human development in the Arab World after the United Arab Emirates. In 2009, Qatar was the United States’ fifth-largest export market in the Middle East, trailing behind the U.A.E., Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt. With a small citizen population of fewer than 250,000 people, foreign workers outnumber native Qataris.
Foreign expatriates come mainly from other Arab nations (20% of population), the Indian subcontinent (India 20%, Nepal 13%, Pakistan 7%, Sri Lanka 5%), Southeast Asia (Philippines 10%), and other countries (5%).
Qatar has attracted an estimated $100 billion in investment, with approximately $60 to $70 billion coming from the United States in the energy sector. It is estimated that Qatar will invest over $120 billion in the energy sector in the next ten years.
Here are two videos giving you a little idea about the city of Doha and the country of Qatar. A lot of information and for sure a magnificent country and city.