Qatar's real estate sector's outlook is "very bright" and more lucrative now than ever for international investors, according to a top official of the Investment Promotion Agency Qatar (IPAQ).
“Investing in Qatar’s real estate market is more lucrative now than ever. Not only can international investors explore a more diverse range of residential and commercial properties and reap coveted benefits that were previously available exclusively to citizens, they can also take advantage of expedited procedures that allow them to complete a real estate transaction in a few minutes, and claim their residence permit in a few days,” said IPAQ chief executive Sheikh Ali Alwaleed al-Thani.
He was addressing a webinar 'Spotlight on Qatar’s Real Estate Market Reforms' with the participation of representatives from the Ministry of Justice (MoJ), the Ministry of Municipality and Environment (MME), Qatari Diar, United Development Company (UDC), and Qatar Sotheby's International Realty.
The event also featured a virtual panel discussion where participants explained how Qatar’s laws and reforms strengthen the real estate market and provide an attractive platform for international investors to diversify their portfolios.
“The outlook is very bright, considering a 36% growth in real estate transactions in 2020, the market’s rapid recovery from the pandemic, and the inclusion of significant development projects in the state’s budget for 2021," al-Waleed said.
With the issuance of the Council’s Decision No (28) of 2020, Qatar now has 16 usufruct areas with a 99-year term and nine areas that offer freehold ownership.
The usufruct right areas include Al Sadd, Msheireb, Fereej Bin Mahmoud, Al Mirqab Al Jadeed, Al Mansoura, Al Salata, Old Al Ghanim, Umm Ghuwailina, Doha International Airport area, and New Doha.
The freehold property areas include The Pearl-Qatar, Administrative District No. 60 and 61 in Al Dafna, Lusail, West Bay, Onaiza, and Al Khor Resort.
The laws provide owners with the permanent residency card privileges for property investment above QR3.65mn and the benefit of a residency permit without a sponsor for those spending more than QR730,000.
To expedite processes, a special section has been added to the MoJ official website to facilitate investors’ access to relevant data, information, and forms as well as answers to all legal questions related to the new law.
The authorities have also streamlined procedures to allow international investors to obtain their residency upon completing the purchase of an eligible property.
A recent Cushman and Wakefield report had said recent amendments to real estate ownership laws allowing non-Qataris to purchase real estate in nine zones have significantly boosted the residential sales market in recent months.
This has been most notable in Lusail where apartments in the Al Erkyah and Yasmeen districts have seen an increasing volume of sales, it said, adding the demand for real estate sales has been boosted by expatriate purchasers, who can take advantage of the new ownership laws.