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Sheikha Mayassa/Twitter

Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad Al Thani

Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad Al Thani and two other Qataris have once again been ranked among the world’s 100 most powerful Arab businesswomen.

The Qatar Museums chairperson is joined on the 2017 Forbes power list by Mira Al Attiyah, chief executive of QNB Capital.

Sheikha Hanadi Al Thani, founder and chairperson of asset management company Amwal, was also named.


Photo for illustrative purposes only.

All three made the rankings last year, but two of them have fallen down the list in the latest index.

Up and down

That includes Sheikha Al Mayassa, who ranked fifth last year and third in 2015. This year, she was in 11th place.

Sheikha Hanadi also dropped on the list, by 10 places. She is now 64th.

However, as CEO of QNB’s investment banking subsidiary, Al Attiyah rose eight places from last year, and is now 25th.


Sheikha Hanadi bint Nasser bin Khalid Al Thani

Forbes does not explain its methodology for designations on the list.

But factors that play a role include annual reports and company websites, company revenues or GDPs for government departments/ministries, years of experience and a ministry’s scope.

Other countries

In terms of the 14 countries represented on the list, the UAE claimed the most spots, with 18 women ranked. It was followed by Egypt with 16 women and a dozen people from Lebanon.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait both had 10 heads of business named, Jordan eight, Oman seven, Morocco six and Bahrain five.

Palestine and Tunisia each had two, while Syria and Iraq had one apiece.

World Economic Forum/Flickr

Lubna S. Olayan, chief executive of Olayan Financing Company

The top three spots on this year’s list remained unchanged compared to 2016.

Saudi Arabia’s Lubna S. Olayan, chief executive of Olayan Financing Company, again took the top ranking.

She was followed by Lobna Helal, Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Egypt, and then Raja Easa Al Gurg, managing director of the Easa Saleh Al Gurg Group.

Forbes has also published a top 10 list of the most powerful Arab women in government.

Dr. Hessa Al Jaber, Qatar’s former ICT minister, featured in 2015. However, Qatar does not have any representation in this year’s ranking.

The government list is topped by Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, Minister of State for Tolerance in the UAE.



Photo for illustrative purposes only.

The ongoing political and economic isolation of Qatar has only made the country and its people stronger, the president and CEO of Qatar Petroleum has said.

Speaking to Al Jazeera, Saad Sherida Al Kaabi said the Gulf crisis has not affected Qatar’s LNG exports.

Listing 18 countries that rely on Doha’s reserves, including Japan, China, Germany and the UK, he added, “There is not a buyer of LNG that does not call on Qatar to supply it.”

Al Kaabi even expressed gratitude to Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the UAE for taking action against his country.

“I would like to thank the four countries for their blockade, because it has made Qatar stronger, the people of Qatar stronger, their businesses stronger. We will come out of this much stronger than before,” he said.

Economic cost

Despite Al Kaabi’s remarks, Qatari officials have previously conceded that the boycott has raised expenses for the government.

For example, earlier this month Qatar’s foreign minister said it costs 10 times as much money to import food and medicine since the blockade started.

Al Meera

Turkish dairy products

The government is footing most of that bill to keep prices down for residents, he added at the time.

This is not great news for Qatar, which before the crisis had been slashing budgets amid lower global oil prices.

But officials have stressed that they have the resources to handle the challenge.

And some analysts have previously forecast that the country could ride out an economic embargo from its neighbors for months or even years.

Financial toll aside, the blockade has helped bolster Qatar’s image abroad, in that many nations have not sided with the quartet on their action.

Broken trust

Also yesterday, Al Kaabi affirmed that Qatar has no plans to cut off gas to the UAE, which depends heavily on Qatar’s gas to power its nation.

Legally, QP has that option, but “if you stop the gas, the biggest harm is to the people of the UAE. The people of the UAE are cousins, relatives, and friends … and we have nothing against them,” the CEO said.


Photo for illustrative purposes only.

Still, that doesn’t mean Qatar will forgive and forget everything that has transpired over the past seven weeks.

“The trust that we have built over the years has been broken overnight,” Al Kaabi told Al Jazeera.


Vodafone / Facebook

Photo for illustrative purposes only.

Vodafone Qatar has confirmed that its network has “technical issues,” leading to a loss of service for customers.

In a tweet early this morning, the company acknowledged the problem and said that it was working to resolve the issue, which it said “might affect access to our network.”

And three further tweets sent seven hours later, the company said that the problems started when it was carrying out upgrade work on its systems:

The company went on to say that its staff were “working tirelessly” to fix the issue, and said that it would keep customers updated on Twitter.

However, it did not provide any time-frame for when the service might return to normal.

Customer frustration

Many of Vodafone Qatar’s customers have taken to social media to express their annoyance at the lengthy lack of service.

We’ll keep you posted on developments. Thoughts?