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Real estate revitalises economy in 2022

Doha: Qatar’s economy witnessed a positive epitome last year with the surge of foreign investments and projects tied up with the real estate industry. 

The market showed a significant boost with enhanced infrastructures and alluring locations that attracted investors across the globe in all four quarters. 

During Q1 2022, the Ministry of Justice revealed that the real estate transactions amounted to QR4.9bn in the first three months. 

Implementing several investments and business projects by partnering with international firms, a total of 1,251 transactions took place with an average size of QR3.9m deal in the real estate market. 

A total worth of QR1.5bn was signed for the real estate projects in March while January and February recorded deals worth QR1.74bn and QR1.66bn respectively. 

As expected, the rise in potential investments and surge of the realty industry market grew significantly with the excellently concluded FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.

Events helped gain economic momentum

Increased projects in the State of Qatar have made the economy even more robust and arduous. The momentum was gained by numerous activities and trade partnerships held in the region appeasing the countries and organisations towards strong relationships in the years ahead. 

One of the many events held in Qatar was the ‘Build Your House Exhibition 2022’, which highlighted the progress of the real estate market during the year and the rising projects and activities in the sector. 

The three-day event spotlighted trade deals signed for QR453m and was witnessed by more than 10,000 visitors. Several industry experts and guests from many universities, and private and government firms took part by presenting seminars and conferences. 

Just like in previous years, the successful event accentuated the reputation of investing in Qatar and the benefits derived from involving in real estate-related projects. Such events are carried out to support its citizens, residents, and global investors to tie up with government firms in executing investments in real estate. 

The industry-related talks were enlightening and informed benefiting Qatar’s realty sector with the participation of numerous individuals, potential investors, and entrepreneurs as the economy regained positive momentum post-COVID.

Anticipating to post preeminent growth in the real estate industry, the demand continued to rise each month while the mega sporting event inched closer. 

Many experts in the market sighed hope for tremendous growth in line with the tournament and upcoming events that will be hosted by Qatar. According to a report given to The Peninsula by the MD properties, the investments and projects have begun escalating and during the World Cup, the demand will reach its peak. 

On the other hand, due to the sporting event, leasing activities and rents skyrocketed. Data curated by the Ministry of Justice also stated that during April, real estate trading deals went over QR2bn for 330 realty properties with 31 percent in Doha’s Municipality area.

Fifa World Cup and beyond

Last year’s World Cup has been the essential marketing component in the sector. With over 1.2 million fans traversing to the first-ever Arab-hosted country, real estate projects in addition to tourism and economy boosted. Albeit rents in 2022 increased due to FIFA, it currently witnesses a steep decline in the residential market. 

Industrial professionals noted that the market is buoyant on several factors with the strengthening economy and developing infrastructure facilities invested by Qatar’s regime. 

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Al Emadi Enterprises, Mohamed Abdul Karim Al Emadi  during a Qatar TV programme entitled “The real estate scene before and after the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and the future of supply and demand” presented the outlook of the country exceptionally. 

He said “I am optimistic about the real estate sector of Qatar at present and future. I do not think that even during the mega sporting event the prices will touch exorbitant rates contrary to people’s concerns due to adequate supply.” 

The global event put forward an extraordinary performance not just for sports but also for unveiling doors and opportunities for worldwide entrepreneurs anticipating investing in the country. 

"Such mega-events help the economy but it is not based on them. Qatar has a strong economy based on hydrocarbon, infrastructure, and fortune not relying on any event so the development of the country will continue with its fast pace,” Al Emadi added.

Meanwhile, numerous other industry developers said that the global events in the country will benefit both investors and property dealers alike. 

Century 21 Qatar's chairman Ibrahim Al Mana said: “I agree that the situation of real estate in the country is normal. A big tournament like the World Cup increases demand resulting in a rise in prices which happens all over the world.” 

He also underlined the reasons why the rental prices seemed colossal during the months before the World Cup. Some of them included the rising demand of providing accommodation for FIFA fans and concerns regarding the companies in the region on the shortage of housing facilities. 

This swooped in prices reaching their peak during the global tournament. Al Mana later said that “I expect that after World Cup the prices will go down but not suddenly, after the second or third quarters of 2023 because most of the contracts are annual. Most of the contracts on high prices were signed in the middle of 2022”.

According to a report entitled ‘Qatar’s Real Estate Market Outlook - Building the Future’ underlines the growth prospects of different sectors’ by IPA and EY, the real estate market showed an emerging interest in attracting investments around the globe. 

It stated that “The real estate sector offers unique investment opportunities to investors in the growing economy and stance of Qatar. Foreign direct investment (FDI) is ranked second after hydrocarbon in attracting investments, reflecting the attractiveness of the sector. The GDP of the real estate sector grew by 18 percent between 2015 and 2020, with the number of issued building permits nearly doubling.”

It also reported on the increasing demand for premium quality buildings in 2022 with 1BHK and 2BHK apartments on the persistent rise as many are preferring to settle down in the Middle Eastern hub in addition to investing in properties.

The Ministry of Justice reported deals worth QR6.37bn and 1203 registered transactions during Q2 2022. The month of June witnessed a thriving opportunity for the sector to bloom with a record of QR2.83bn valued as compared to Q2 2021. 

The data stated that the volume of real estate transactions in the first month of the year amounted to QR1.6bn despite the ongoing challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

A report by Cushman and Wakefield during the year’s second quarter said that “Rental increases are being driven by demand for accommodation ahead of the World Cup, with tens of thousands of apartments being reserved both for fans and staff accommodation for companies providing World Cup-related services.”

Qatari capital city - Doha showed significant improvements with a 14 percent increase year-on-year in the sales listing during H1 2022 on the property finder’s website. 

A 27 percent per sq m increase in the advertised average price was witnessed in Doha while an increase of 7 percent per sq m was seen in Lusail city. 

The report stated: “With Qatar being at the forefront of one of the world’s most popular sporting events, investors and first-time buyers are now more confident in investing in the market. 

The Ministry of Justice is also taking the necessary steps in creating a more transparent market, which will open the doors for even more investment in the near future.”

Experts' take on industry

Leading property developers in the country indicated that the sector is poised for enormous growth in the year, which will be witnessed in the long run. 

Speaking to The Peninsula, Jawdat Al Kateb, General Manager of Coreo real estate, a realty agency at The Pearl Qatar told that “Like many other developed countries, we have a reliably stabled economy and real estate is one of the safest long-term investments.” 

With mesmerising features and facilities Qatar has to offer, it is assertive that many global clients will be anticipating investing in the region as the market here gives lots of 
opportunities with diverse structures. 

“Real estate is beneficial as it is rated for several factors including the right location, whether it’s residential or commercial according to the market demand. I would say the market probably prefer different types of apartments and maybe they prefer one or two-bedroom apartment or studio so it is good to go and understand the market trends first before going to any other development,” Al Kateb said.

During the third Quarter of 2022, deals worth QR4.056bn in addition to 1045 transactions were witnessed in Qatar, the Ministry of Justice reported. 

A total value of QR1.535bn was recorded in August 2022. Although the real estate index declined compared to the previous year, the economic momentum of the country was reinforced. 

Doha Municipality was reported to have sold the most with 31 percent followed by Al Daayen Municipality with 22 percent and Al Rayan Municipality with 21 percent in 2022. 

The highest value reported during last year’s third quarter was trading with eight properties in Doha Municipality and one property each sold in Al Daayen Municipality and Al Rayan Municipality. 

In addition to those prominent areas, The Pearl and Al Kassar reached 204 deals in the residential market amounting to QR406m. 

The month of September evinced the progressive growth of the real estate market in various areas including residential, investments, retail, commercial, and office supplies.

As Qatar limbered up for the much-awaited moment in FIFA history, real estate agents in the country were optimistic about rewarding themselves with increasing and enhancing projects in the months to come as many tourists began investing and buying properties. 

Mustapha Mesto, who heads the Sales and Leasing operations at the Mirage International Property Consultants told The Peninsula, “With FIFA, we have the visitors and therefore business projects are rising. It is never going to stop the market. It could fluctuate from 10 to 15 percent but the market will go up due to the potential investors.” 

Superlative infrastructures and facilities offered by Qatar have been an impressive take for investors in the region. 

This has been indicated to be a key factor in rising real estate businesses over the years of planning and developing the country into a well-composed hub in the Middle East. 

Mesto added that “Since they won the bid for FIFA Qatar 2022 in 2010, everything in Doha changed. The market started to incline, especially the construction sector. A lot of land and buildings transformed into a newly developed city. It is the market and it will not stop. We are continuing to witness more clients and investors and it just keeps increasing day by day.”

The lucrative investments being carried out in Qatar have become a major attraction for Qatar’s residential sector. 

A report by ValuStrat during Q4 2022 says that nearly 12,600 residential units were being built. 

The report given during the third quarter of the year states that “Approximately 12,600 units are in the pipeline for Q4 2022 of which 72 percent of this additional supply comes from two master projects in Al Wukair.” 

Qatar’s economy has been constantly upfront with the rising projects in the market. The economy augmented the residential, retail, and hospitality sector during the final quarter of the year. 

According to Cushman and Wakefield, “the number of residential sales in Qatar increased by 8.7 percent year on year to the end of November, as investors took advantage of new Freehold ownership laws. While sales activity remained healthy in Q4, the volume of transactions in October and November fell 13 percent on the same months in 2020.” 

Substantial growth was recorded in the retail market enabling the real estate-related projects to perform fairly well and boost the country’s economy in 2022. 

“Strong growth was reported in retail spending in Q4 as confidence returned in the sector. Leasing activity has been strong in upcoming developments such as Commercial Boulevard and Place Vendome, although vacancy rates have increased overall in malls following two turbulent years in the retail sector,” it added.

For a detailed perspective on the property market, visit:  Qatar - Real Estate Review Q4 2022