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SCDL

The new pillars being installed

Qatar’s upcoming Al Wakrah stadium came a major step closer to completion this week with the installation of two enormous pillars to support the venue’s retracting roof.

The pillars – which look like huge hockey sticks – weigh 540 tonnes each and were installed using two 600-tonne cranes.

SCDL

Images released by the SCDL show the progress on the site

Construction on the 40,000-seater stadium is expected to be completed next year.

When done, it will have a retractable steel roof that takes about a half hour to close with the help of steel wires.

SCDL

Wakrah Stadium rendering

The roof, which is inspired by the hull of a dhow, will provide shade and help keep the stadium cool during football matches.

Zaha Hadid’s legacy

The stadium will serve as the venue for the 2022 World Cup quarter-finals. It was designed by the late British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid.

SCDL

Al Wakrah Stadium

Hadid’s death last year only increases the importance of completing the stadium, said the venue’s project manager.

In a statement this week, Thani Al Zarraa added:

“The fact that the design of this stadium will bring (her) vision from the paper into structural form is in the back of everyone’s mind.”

“It is both a privilege and a challenge to be working on such a unique project.”

According to Al Zarraa, construction on the site is still running to schedule. The completion date is sometime in the final quarter of next year.

Thoughts?

Pixabay

Photo for illustrative purposes only.

Work on a sprawling QR1.6 billion poultry complex located in “strategic areas” across Qatar is officially underway, Dar Al Rayan Investment Co. has announced.

When finished, the project will provide a big boost for domestic chicken and egg production at a crucial time for Qatar, which is embroiled in a long dispute with its neighbors.

Yesterday, Dar Al Rayan said that its complex will have a production capacity of 70,000 tons of broiler meat and 250 million eggs per year.

Al Rayan Poultry

Egg production at Al Rayan Poultry

Al Rayan Poultry will span 15 million square meters of land across Qatar, including at farms in the south, in Al Waab and in the north.

Plans are also afoot to build a feed mill that can supply poultry producers around the nation.

In a statement, company official Mohammed Hussein Al Ali said:

“Our focus is not just to build a poultry farm, but to create a whole ecosystem that supports the production of domestic poultry products.

Steps like providing parent stock poultry feed and factory will all support and encourage smaller broiler meat production units in the country. This, in the long run will contribute significantly to the local economy and domestic food security.”

Past plans

Qatar has been talking about boosting domestic poultry production for years.

In 2014, the government announced plans to build a new chicken farm complex. There was even talk of floating an IPO on the public-private project.

But then in early 2015, the concept was put on hold amid other belt-tightening measures.

However, months later, Dar Al Rayyan was awarded QR1.3 billion by Qatar’s economy ministry after beating out three dozen other companies vying to set up a chicken farm.

Video still

Sheikh Tamim addresses the nation about the Gulf dispute.

No completion date for the poultry complex has been disclosed yet. But the project has taken on new importance in recent months as Qatar works to become more self-sufficient.

Officials had to scramble to negotiate new trade partners and routes for food and other supplies in June after Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the UAE and Bahrain cut ties for political reasons.

Since then, Qatar’s Emir has called on citizens to use the crisis as an opportunity and a wakeup call.

“We are opening our economy to initiatives, investments, production of food, medicine and ultimately to diversify our sources of income,” Sheikh Tamim said during a national address in July.

Thoughts?

Mwani

Hamad Port for illustrative purposes only.

After plunging two months in a row, the value of Qatar’s imports jumped sharply in August, according to new government figures.

They stood at QR8.7 billon, an increase of 39.1 percent from July, the Ministry of Development, Planning and Statistics (MDPS) said.

The August figures were still down 7.8 percent from the same time last year.

However, the figures are a notable improvement from the sharp y-o-y drops of up to 35 percent seen in June and July.

Gulf dispute

Those months marked the beginning of a boycott on Qatar by some of its Gulf neighbors, who cut ties with the country over alleged terrorism links.

Qatar has denied these claims.

Al Meera

Turkish chicken

Despite the initial drop-off in imports due to the air, land and sea blockade, the country has forged new trading partners for construction materials and food, including Iran, Turkey and India.

The crisis now continues into its fifth month.

Thoughts?