Woqod to invest QR634mn to fuel local expansion in 2018, says CEO
March 25 2018 10:03 PM
Woqod CEO Saad Rashid al-Muhannadi and Woqod chairman Ahmad Saif al-Sulaiti. PICTURE: Jayan Orma
Woqod CEO Saad Rashid al-Muhannadi and Woqod chairman Ahmad Saif al-Sulaiti. PICTURE: Jayan Orma

Qatar Fuel Company (Woqod) will be investing around QR634mn this year for its expansion projects in Qatar as part of initiatives to cater to the local market, a senior official has said.

Woqod chairman Ahmad Saif al-Sulaiti, who addressed shareholders during the company’s annual general meeting at the Al Dana Club on Sunday, said the company has “an ambitious plan” for increasing its market stake for distribution and transportation of petroleum products, natural gas, bitumen, ship bunker fuel, and other products.

“This would be achieved through the implementation of and operation of various projects, and concluding the necessary contracts and agreements relevant to these activities, with the support of quality systems, modern technology systems, as well as the introduction of an industry standard health, safety, security and environment rectification/preservation system/measure,” al-Sulaiti told shareholders, who approved the board of directors’ recommendation to distribute dividends of QR8 per share.

Al-Sulaiti said arrangements for adding 30 new fixed as well as mobile stations “were already in place” to achieve Woqod’s target of 120 gas stations by 2020. Recently, Woqod announced the opening of its New Salata petrol station – the second to open this year and the company’s 60th across Qatar.

Elaborating further on the company’s expansion plans, Woqod CEO Saad Rashid al-Muhannadi said, “We have almost 30 petrol stations that we are currently building and those are not just plans but signed contracts – a commitment between Woqod and a third party, so roughly speaking we’re talking about QR634mn that is going to be spent in 2018.”

“Our focus now is on satisfying the local market in Qatar and in the short term I don’t see any expansion for Woqod overseas because we are concentrating our efforts in the country but if we have a viable opportunity, definitely we are going to expand,” al-Muhannadi told reporters on the sidelines of the meeting.

In his report, al-Muhannadi said Woqod’s sales of petroleum products in 2017 jumped 6% year-on-year, noting that sales of jet fuel alone witnessed a 10% gain due to the increase in Qatar Airways’ flights.

He also reported that Woqod “is planning to stop the use of steel cylinders,” launching promotional offers for Shafaf cylinders. Sales for liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) increased by 27% and cylinder sales grew by 7%, he said.

On vehicle inspection (Fahes), al-Muhannadi said, “Technical inspection centres amounted to nine by the end of 2017. As of now, the centres amounted to 10, including three mobile centres. As to future centres, tender has been issued for Al Mazrouaa Centre, and a study for building a new centre at Madinat Mowater is currently under review.”

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