FIN24 - 8/5/2006
Two Qatari property developers on Sunday unveiled a $5bn tourism project, adding to a slew of major investments underway in the gas-rich Gulf emirate.
The complex is to include two hotels, a marina, chalets, "abstract-design" gardens and sports facilities on an area of almost eight million square metres according to Ghanem al-Saad, chairperson of Barwa, one of the developers.
The project in Al-Khor on Qatar's northeastern coast will take about five years to finish, according to a statement issued by Barwa and its partner Diar.
Diar has already announced plans to build a new residential and leisure city called Lusail at a cost of more than $6bn.
Qatar, which has a population of 750 000, of whom only 150 000 are nationals, says it has nearly $50bn worth of infrastructure projects underway.
Record-high energy prices over the past few years have fueled a real estate development frenzy across the Gulf Arab states with countries competing to unveil the biggest and boldest projects.
The UAE's Dubai, which is by far leading the development craze, announced plans last week to build the world's largest hotel strip at a cost of $27.2bn rivaling that of famed US gambling town Las Vegas.
Saudi Arabia, the world's largest oil producer, announced in December plans to build the King Abdullah Economic City on its western coast at a cost of $26bn.