Canadian firm looks to join Qatar’s self-sufficiency drive
July 22 2018 08:10 PM
White Rock International president Douglas Power, Counsellor and Senior Trade Commissioner John Rodn
White Rock International president Douglas Power (left) flanks (centre) Counsellor (Commercial) and Senior Trade Commissioner John Rodney of the Canadian embassy in Doha and White Rock International managing director Fawaz Hadi after a meeting that discussed plans to bring in high-level trade delegations from Canada to Qatar, as well as other development projects. PICTURE: Ram Chand.

A Canadian firm is looking towards establishing factories and manufacturing facilities in Qatar that would help address the country’s thrust towards self-sufficiency and food security.

White Rock International, which has a communication and management consulting office in Qatar, aims to bring in “viable and sub-stainable” economic development projects in the fields of agriculture and vertical farming, aquaculture and land-based salmon, and seafood products and seal oil protein, including a host of confectionary items.
“The impact of these projects is twofold because they are strong for Qatar’s economy, as well as Canada’s economy since it increases our output in manufacturing,” White Rock International president Douglas Power told Gulf Times in an interview.
“And the secondary processing area is bringing in the raw material because one of the focuses here is the ‘Made in Qatar’ trademark, so we want to bring in factories to Qatar in some key areas that have to do with food security but the projects and the technology in aquaculture would be 100% land based,” he continued.
Power said White Rock is also aiming to bring technology in vertical farming that utilises not just hydroponics but special LED lights and special cubes that allows farmers to grow specific brands or types of vegetables. 
“Because every vegetable has its own requirements for its growth, so trying to grow everything under one room is not sufficient to the plant biology; it needs to be in cubes, so we have a cubing and stacking system that’s more efficient than anything else that’s out in the market now,” Power explained.
He added: “These are the focus areas but we’re also looking at bringing in food items into Qatar such as premium cod fish from Fogo Island in Newfoundland, Canada and other products including beef, grain and various raw materials so that they could do secondary processing here.
“Instead of doing the traditional importing of singular products, we want to increase the economic development in Qatar, so these are all viable and sustainable projects that can address the current issues here but at the same time, it is also expanding our own economic development in Canada.”
Aside from food security, White Rock also plans to bring in projects related to oil and gas, immigration consulting, mining resources of rare minerals, forestry and wood products, and hydrogenated water technology system, which infuses hydrogen in water for health benefits.
“Because of the advancements in Canada’s oil and gas industry, we also want to bring new innovative technologies to upgrade bitumen and heavy oil. We have the technology that currently does not exist anywhere else in the world except in Canada,” said Power, who is set to meet with major players in Qatar’s oil and gas sector.
Power also recently held a meeting with the Canadian embassy in Doha to discuss plans to bring Canadian government officials and business delegations to Qatar in the future.
“Our office in Qatar is working to organise and facilitate bringing in delegations from the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador: our government officials and representatives vis-à-vis our premier and cabinet ministers who can address and focus on the areas that are requested in Qatar. We also aim to accomplish this in conjunction with our trading company in Canada, Atlantic Trading Corporation,” he said.



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