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Sameh Saeid
The private sector is seeking to build an agricultural city (complex), a new concept of food security, in Qatar.
Mohammed bin Ahmed Alobaidly, a Board Member of Qatar Chamber, has urged the Qatari government to embrace the initiative of the private sector to build an agricultural city, which will provide Qatar with 100 percent of its food requirements within 10 years from the start of the project.
According to the feasibility study of the project, the first phase of the agricultural city will focus on fulfilling the food needs of about 3.5 million people, the second phase will focus on economic profits that would be generated through food processing and tourism.
The agriculture city is expected to have a conference centre, retail markets, research centres and specialised universities.
Alobaidly, who is also the Chairman of the Agricultural and Environment Committee, told Qatar Tribune that the city will be an integrated facility, including food production, processing and storage units.
The facility will provide solutions to four problems in food productions - lack of water, lack of a suitable climate, lack of appropriate space, and lack of arable soil.
Alobaidly urged the authorities to allocate land and infrastructure for the project.
He said the project will give priority to Qatari investors, while foreign companies could participate in the marketing and promotion of products.
"After getting approval from the authorities, the idea is to list it on Qatar Stock Exchange so that citizens could participate in financing the project. The project will also give opportunity to small and medium enterprises and entrepreneurs to participate through Qatar Development Bank," he said, adding that the project is in line with Qatar's National Food Security Programme (QNFSP), first initiated in 2008.
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