Reinvestment of oil and gas income in infrastructure is driving a building boom in the Middle East nation

Qatar's construction market is forecast to grow by 17% in 2009. The growth is being fuelled by income from oil and gas sales, which is being reinvested in infrastructure, according to the organisers of the Qatar International Real Estate and Investment Exhibition 2009, which starts this week in Doha. The country's GDP is expected to grow by 9.7% this year.

The chairman of the organisers Trance Continent, Muteab Al Sa'aq, told local press: “Development at this astounding pace is precedent to the potential of Qatar's property market despite the challenge of the present economic slowdown.

“As correction envelopes the region's real estate sector, we are expecting Qatar to lead the way as the centre of development for major industries in the Middle East.”

The growth is likely to intensify the interest of UK firms in building up business in Qatar in order to counteract the impact of the slowdown in workloads and payment delays in Dubai.