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Qatar opens up full company ownership to expat investors

Qatar opens up full company ownership to expat investors

DOHA: Qatar has now granted 100 per cent ownership of businesses to expats investing in the emirate.  It’s now possible for expats wishing to invest in the country by starting up or introducing businesses to own 100 per cent of their companies. The new rule was announced by the government last Thursday as a move to boost non-oil revenues, although it comes at a time of political crisis when Qatar is still under neighbouring countries’ diplomatic and economic boycott.

Qatar is the third-biggest Gulf State economy and is looking to finance a large budget deficit caused by the 2014 slump in oil prices. Overseas investors are to be given permission to fully own businesses across the majority of the emirate’s economic sectors, although those wishing to invest in the banking and insurance sectors will need to obtain a special permit from Qatar’s Ministry of Economics and trade. In addition, expat investors are disallowed from owning franchises or real estate.  Until now, foreigners have been allowed to own up to 49 per cent of businesses listed on the Qatar stock exchange, according to a law passed three years ago.