Climate and Clothing
Qatar has a hot and humid summer with an average daily temperature of 41°C. Light clothing is needed for the most part of the year and in keeping with the traditional custom it is not advisable for women to wear shorts or sleeveless dresses in public. The winter months are cool with occasional rain hence light woolen clothing is needed during this season.
The restaurants of the hotels listed above enjoy the reputation for best food and have round-the-clock coffee shop service. Other independent restaurants in Qatar include Airport Restaurant, Strand (Lebanese), Rendez-vous, Plaza Cafe, Dragon (Indian and Chinese). There are also snack bars such as Popeye, Wimpy and Kentucky Fried Chicken and several cafe-restaurants serving good Indian food.
Alcohol may not be imported and can only be brought by residents with special permits.
Although the government is making an attempt towards industrial diversification, the economy is still based overwhelmingly on oil. Oil was discovered near Dukhan and export began in 1949. The main oilfields are Al-Bunduq, which is shared with Abu Dhabi, and Idal-Sharqi which was formerly operated by Shell.
In 1979 Qatar assumed 100% ownership of the Qatar Petroleum Company (QPC) and in 1977 it assumed control of the Qatar Gas Company.
Oil provides for well over 90% of government revenues and its income has averaged about three times the actual expenditure. In the World Bank preliminary assessment for 1975 Qatar was placed the third richest state in the world per capita on an estimated calculation of some 45,000 indigenous Qataris sharing an oil income of some $25 billion a year. With the current production level of 500,000 bpd, Qatar’s oil reserve should last another 30 years. Its natural gas deposits are estimated to contain 70-100 trillion cubic feet. The State runs a generous aid program and invests the surplus as precaution when oil runs out. Major projects include a natural gas liquid (NGL) plant at Umm Said built at the cost of $80 million but was destroyed by fire following an explosion in 1977. The rebuilt plant with an annual capacity of some 876,000 tons of propane, butane and naphtha, is expected to resume production shortly. A major petrochemical plant is due to go on stream very soon and will produce 300,000 tons of ethylene for conversion into polyethylene per year. Other projects include a $400 million steel mill with a capacity of 400,000 tons, a small oil refinery, a power generation, water distillation plants and two cement plants.
Economy an Industry
The state’s agriculture plays a major role in meeting local food requirements. The fishing industry has a strong export market in shrimps. Current production exceeds 30,000 tons of vegetables, 6,000 tons of fruits and 3.000 tons of alfalfa. Production of poultry and dairy products is also substantial. Qatar’s long term objective is in achieving self-sufficiency in basic foodstuffs.
The Qa.ar National Fishing Company operates six trawlers and exports $2.5 million of shrimps per year. The Company also markets white fish, particularly humour for local market and traditional fishermen are still active in this field.
Places to Visit
The Qatar National Museum situated in Doha, the capital, is the most ambitious and impressive museum in the Gulf region. It has been carefully restored to reflect the ancient and modern history of Qatar. It’s most unusual feature is the dhow basin with six replicas of old pearling and other vessels all built manually in the traditional manner.