FAHAD RASHID AL KAABI

Qatar 2020 | ECONOMY | INTERVIEW

Manateq is driven to create a world-class business environment to enable domestic and foreign investors to deliver value-added products and services to local, regional, and international markets.

Fahad Rashid Al Kaabi
BIOGRAPHY

Fahad Rashid Al Kaabi joined Manateq from his role as the CEO of Qatar Project Management (QPM), bringing with him over 17 years of wide-ranging work experience in the areas of engineering, project management, and top-level administration. Prior to being appointed CEO of QPM, he was part in formulating public policy as manager of the Conservation and Energy Efficiency Department of Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation (KAHRAMAA). He received his bachelor's degree in industrial engineering and another bachelor's degree in business management, both from the University of Miami. He then received his master's degree in project management from the University of Houston in 2007.

Manateq is one of the main drivers to incentivize the private sector to diversify the Qatari economy. What have been the main areas of focus for Manateq during the last year?
Our work over the past year has been focused on putting in place solid foundations for the creation of logistics parks and industrial zones to ensure that the investors we attract are able to leverage favorable business incentives. We have paid attention to fostering the non-oil private sector—particularly the SME segment—and I am pleased to report that more than 2,300 plots have been allocated to investors looking to establish projects in our logistics parks and industrial zones. We have formed, and continue to nurture, strong bonds with the private sector, encouraging it to contribute to economic diversification and the country's development. This is vital to securing long-term, sustainable growth and the establishment of an economic bedrock capable of competing globally and providing the country with future jobs and prosperity, long after major infrastructure projects are completed. In designing our parks, we have drilled down into the current and future needs of the entire assembly, retail, and logistics sector to ensure we meet their requirements and help foster their success. The public sector working in close partnership with the private sector can create transformative opportunities for the country.

How will you work together with other institutions like Qatar Free Zones Authority (QFZA) and the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MOIC) in order to attract FDI to Qatar?
We work closely with all organizations that, like Manateq, are keenly focused on achieving the Qatar National Vision 2030 and its economic diversification aiming at fostering the development of a vibrant private sector and a diversified knowledge-based economy. For example, we have cooperated with the Ministry of Commerce and Industry on the drafting of a manufacturing strategy to stimulate FDI into the country. The strategy is developed to create conditions that enable a vibrant industrial development across various sectors, remove the constraints that may emerge, create compelling sources of competitive advantage, and create a unique investment proposition for Qatar. Manateq and QFZA work hand in hand to identify potential international investors willing to invest in Qatar. When identified, the potential investors will be directed to QFZA as they continue their process under the free zones regulations to benefit from the incentives offered.

What benefits does Manateq offer investors?
The benefits are numerous, though they amount to an overall solution to ease business setup in a strategically located, well-serviced, and modern destination. Manateq's total land bank is about 29 million sqm, across our logistics, industrial, and warehousing parks, and from this we can offer investors land plots of various sizes so they can develop their own industrial facilities in the industrial zones, while they can also build their own warehouse or workshop along with a showroom, workers' accommodation, and office space all in the same plot at the logistics parks. Alternatively, we offer ready-built warehouses in the warehousing parks that have been developed in partnership with the private sector. In addition, we help facilitate business setup. When businesses invest through a Manateq project, they are serviced via a dedicated point of contact who takes care of the business setup processes in Qatar and enables a smooth transition into the state's business landscape. All associated costs are taken into consideration depending on the project. We act as a full-service agent for investors easing the strain of business set up and massively reducing start-up times. Another incentive for investors to locate in our logistics parks is that they can benefit from a range of client services, unparalleled interconnectivity, integrated infrastructure, an easy set-up process, and financing. Moreover, by facilitating the easy start-up of businesses in these parks, we hope to attract a wider range of sectors, indigenous enterprises, and local investment.