Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker has outlined the business potential in Qatar for European investors, during the seventh Business & Investment in Qatar Forum held recently in the German capital.

Addressing a discussion panel, Al Baker outlined the optimism and excitement that characterises the country’s development as the Gulf State enters one of the most exciting phases of its history.

He discussed Qatar’s farsighted ambitions and investment opportunities as the nation continues to diversify its economy, build vital infrastructure and increase levels of education and healthcare to world-leading standards.

“There is no other country in the world that has a more attractive proposition than Qatar; with so many projects either underway or in the pipeline, the business environment is buzzing with energy in almost every sector,” said Al Baker.

“Sports, tourism and culture are also playing a particularly important role in the diversification of our local community and the development of a healthy and stable economy, with major global events such as the 2022 FIFA World Cup ensuring all eyes will be on Qatar.

“Since we won the bid to host the FIFA World Cup just over two years ago, we have seen an influx of international businesses setting up in Doha and a significant increase in projects to support the event.

“A nation as successful and prolific as Germany in the sporting arena, especially in football, knows all too well of the importance the people’s game plays in uniting a country and driving growth.

“With tourism in Qatar on the rise and foreign visitor numbers up by 50 per cent last year, we can only expect to see more growth and development in areas such as hotel space and other facilities to cater to the increasing numbers of both leisure and business travellers coming here.

“Our airline is proud to be directly involved in promoting and supporting growth across various sectors in Qatar, with our ever expanding international route network, the opening of the state-of-the-art Hamad International Airport later this year, our major sponsorship deals including our most recently signed partnership with FC Barcelona and important community events such as the 4th Qatar International Food Festival.

Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 16 years of operations, currently flying to 126 key destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and The Americas, including Chicago, the airline’s newest point introduced on April 10.

Over the next few weeks and months, Qatar Airways will launch scheduled flights to a diverse portfolio of new routes, including Salalah, Oman (May 22); Basra, Iraq (June 3); Sulaymaniyah, Iraq (August 20) and Chengdu, China (September 3) with many more new destinations planned.