Posted on July 04, 2015

Doha Bank hosted a knowledge sharing session on 3rd July 2015 at Hyatt Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India on “Opportunities in Qatar and GCC“. The session witnessed participation from Senior officials in major Indian Corporates and from Senior Bankers in India.

Dr. Bhaswat Chakraborty, Chairman – CII Gujarat State Panel on Pharma & Health Care gave the Welcome Address and insight on India- GCC economic relationship. He said “India-GCC relationship is growing stronger by the day as both realize the potential and importance of each other. Trade and commerce is the most important pillar of the India-GCC relationship. Success of high volume of trade and commerce between India and GCC revolves around a high degree of trade and economic complementarities as both caters to each other's economic demands. GCC countries, with large hydrocarbon reserves are crucial for India's energy requirements while the region has been a good market for Indian products.

The large, diverse, accomplished and highly regarded Indian community is making an important contribution to Qatar's progress and in nurturing the bonds of friendship and cooperation between the two countries. India’s bilateral trade with Qatar increased from US$ 2.9 billion in 2007-08 to US$ 16.30 billion in 2012-13. Indian exports to Qatar increased from US$ 538.77 million in 2007-08 to US$ 687.05 million in 2013. Qatar’s exports to India amounted to US$ 15.61 billion in 2012-13 as against $ 6.89 billion in 2007-08.”

On the Key note Address Dr. R. Seetharaman, CEO of Doha Bank gave insight on global economy. He said “According to IMF April 2015 outlook, global growth is forecasted at 3.5 percent in 2015 and 3.8 percent in 2016 respectively. Global growth in 2015 will be driven by a rebound in advanced economies. After weak 2014, growth in the euro area is showing signs of picking up in 2015 however Greece concerns remain. Growth for emerging and developing economies is projected at 4.3 percent in 2015.”

Dr. R. Seetharaman highlighted on Indian economy. He said “The Indian economy grew at 7.3 per cent in 2014-15. The IMF April 2015 outlook expects growth in India at 7.5 percent in 2015-16.Consumer prices rose 5.01 percent in from a year earlier in May 2015. India’s current account deficit in 2014-15 narrowed to 1.3 per cent of GDP. It can even fall below 1 per cent in the current fiscal on the back of easing of global commodity prices. India achieved a fiscal deficit of 4 percent of GDP in 2014-15. The Fiscal deficit is expected at 3.9 per cent of GDP in 2015- 16 and 3.6 percent of GDP in 2016-17 respectively. In 2014 India attracted $35Bn though the FDI route in areas such as electricity, gas, water, waste management.”

Dr. R. Seetharaman gave insight on GCC economies. He said “According to IMF April 2015 outlook, Saudi’s growth for 2015 is at 3 percent in 2015. UAE’s growth for 2015 is at 3.2 percent in 2015, Oman‘s growth for 2015 is 4.6 percent in 2015, Kuwait‘s growth is at 1.7 percent in 2015 and Bahrain’s economy is expected to grow at 2.7 percent in 2015. The fall in oil prices will have impact on growth. GCC GDP at Current prices will exceed $1.4tn in 2015. ”

Dr. R. Seetharaman highlighted on Qatar economy. He said “Qatar’s economy expected to grow by more than 7 percent in 2015.Construction sector is expected to witness a double digit growth this year, thereby support non- hydrocarbon sector diversification. Qatar GDP per-capita in 2015 is expected to be above 81K US$ which is highest among GCC.” Dr. R. Seetharaman gave insight on major opportunities in Qatar. He said “Projects worth more than $31bn are expected to be bid in 2015. The major sectors which are expected to witness activity include construction and transport sectors. Qatar’s recent interim budget has earmarked $18bn for major projects in health, education, infrastructure and transportation as well as projects related to FIFA 2022.”

The event had a Question and Answer Session which was followed by Vote of thanks from Dr. Bhaswat Chakraborty and ended with a Dinner.