Recently published research from Business Monitor International, "Qatar Autos Report Q4 2013", is now available at Fast Market Research
Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 09/24/2013 -- Looking at very early trends for 2013, new vehicle sales were reportedly up by 10%, at 14,283 units, over the first two months of the year. Against this positive backdrop, this quarter BMI maintains its forecast for 17% rise in new vehicle sales in Qatar for 2013. This should take the overall market to nearly 100,000 units, with risks to our forecast still weighted towards the upside.
For 2013, our Country Risk team is forecasting GDP growth of 5% for 2013, falling slightly to 4.8% in 2014. Encouragingly for the longer-term development of the Qatari economy, we believe that growth will continue to be largely driven by the non-hyrdrocarbon sector. In particular, expanding domestic consumption and progress on infrastructure investments, both supported by public spending, will help to stimulate economic activity. We believe that fiscal policy will remain strongly supportive of economic growth, with the government having signalled its intention to increase both current spending and investment expenditure over FY2013/14. Adding further support to the autos sector is the fact that we expect 8.0% growth in private expenditure in Qatar over 2013.
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Rounding out a highly-propitious picture for Qatari new car sales, we also expect government expenditure to keep rising, forecasting growth of 16.6% y-o-y and 13.1% in FY2012/13 and FY2013/14 respectively. To say nothing of the fact that petrol remains among the lowest-priced of any country in the world, this will again act as a support to vehicle demand.
High tourism flows should also benefit the key rental car market. Qatar is expected to increase its hotel room numbers by 5,635 this year, the strongest y-o-y growth in the Middle East.
Elsewhere in the sector, the Qatari government is currently taking steps to develop a policy towards the potential use of compressed natural gas (CNG) as a fuel for domestic vehicles. In June 2013, the emirate's Central Municipal Council (CMC) made recommendations that relevant stakeholders conduct a study into the use of CNG, with Qatar Petroleum providing technical support and the Ministry of Municipality and Urban planning involved in integrating CNG fuelling stations into future infrastructure projects. The council also suggested that government departments introduce CNG vehicles into their fleets, which is a strategy already implemented in other GCC states in order to increase awareness of alternative fuels.
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