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QFZA in deal with Yutong to manufacture e-buses in Qatar

QFZA in deal with Yutong to manufacture e-buses in Qatar

Tribune News Network
Doha
Qatar Free Zones Authority (QFZA) on Monday signed a multilateral framework agreement with Yutong, one of the world’s largest bus and coach suppliers, and Mowasalat, the major transport services provider in Qatar.
The deal will see electric-buses (e-buses) manufactured in the zones with the first e-buses produced for the Qatar FIFA World Cup 2022 and beyond.
The deal is part of a wider Qatari initiative to ensure 25 percent of the public bus network is powered by electricity in time for the tournament, with the entire public fleet system expected to be e-powered by 2030.
The multilateral framework agreement was signed during a ceremony where other agreements were also formalised to facilitate the transformation of the e-vehicles industry in Qatar.
The agreement was signed in the presence of the Prime Minister and Minister of Interior HE Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz Al Thani and Minister of Transport and Communications HE Jassim bin Saif Al Sulaiti.
As per the agreement, Mowasalat and Yutong will partner with QFZA to establish and operate the electric buses factory to deliver buses that will ferry 2022 FIFA World Cup visitors between stadiums, with the first cohort of such e-buses to be earmarked for export across the Middle East, Europe, South America and Africa.
Production of electric buses for export to overseas markets will be a major focus once manufacturing output reaches full capacity. The deal is a result of extensive discussions between QFZA officials, Mowsalat and representatives from the Chinese investors to establish a clean energy bus assembly factory in Qatar Free Zones.
The deal will also see technology and knowledge transfers so parts for the e-buses are manufactured by Qatari firms as part of the government’s wider localisation drive.
These firms are expected to form the foundations of the region’s leading e-vehicle industry, supplying e-vehicles and parts to markets across the globe.
Yutong’s arrival to the Umm Al Houl Free Zone adds to a growing cluster of companies within Qatar Free Zones that are addressing the growing demands for cleaner, more sustainable forms of transport.
Qatar Free Zones operate in an extremely competitive market for FDI. Its growing e-vehicle cluster and the proven market demand and supply-chains that are supporting its growth are helping attract investors at a time when global FDI is down nearly 50 percent this year.
This strategic project will support Qatar’s long-term goals of transforming public transportation in the country to clean energy, and help position the nation as a leading regional player in the e-transport and mobility sector.
Minister of State and QFZA Chairman HE Ahmad Al Sayed said, “The Qatar Free Zones have become a prominent destination for companies with a vision for the future. This agreement reflects QFZA’s commitment to tap on the nexus between emerging technologies and sustainable development which provide huge opportunities for the long-term economic development of Qatar. Besides helping to anchor an electric vehicle auto cluster, this project will provide opportunities to local businesses through localisation of contractors, service providers and suppliers. The production of e-buses for the national market showcases the attractive economic climate for international investors who can deliver what our market requires, he said adding that the plans to export the e-buses underlines QFZ’s world-class logistics operations that connect us to key markets across the globe."
This investment is also a clear sign that Qatar is an extremely attractive market for foreign investment in light of the various projects underway in the country, not least hosting the Qatar FIFA World Cup 2022 that is expected to attract a million and a half visitors from around the world.
A significant number of those visitors will be making trips between stadiums and hotels on e-buses produced in Qatar Free Zones.

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