McDonald’s Qatar announced a QAR 1 million donation for humanitarian assistance in Gaza after the corporation’s Israel branch affirmed it was donating meals to the Israeli military.
McDonald’s reported its first quarterly sales miss in nearly four years on Monday, which has been consolidated by weak sales growth in its business division in the Middle East, China, and India territories.
Campaigners have targeted the fast-food giant after McDonald’s Israel announced last year it had donated thousands of free meals to Israel Defence Forces troops fighting in Gaza.
According to London Stock Exchange Group data, the sales reported in the first quarter were 0.7% – far below market expectations of 5.5%.
Per a report by Reuters, McDonald’s said the war had “meaningfully impacted” performance in some overseas markets in the fourth quarter.
With the most pronounced hit in the Middle East, the company also saw an impact on business in countries such as Malaysia and Indonesia, as well as in France, C.E.O. Chris Kempczinski said on a post-earnings call.
“So long as this war is going on … we’re not expecting to see any significant improvement (in these markets),” Kempczinski said.
Last year, McDonald’s Qatar announced a QAR 1 million donation for humanitarian assistance in Gaza as it faced backlash.
In a statement it said that the 100 percent locally owned and operated enterprise will provide “urgent food aid, water, shelter and care to meet the basic needs and relief to the Palestinian people of Gaza”.
“In this regard, McDonald’s Qatar is donating an amount of 1,000,000 riyals to contribute to the relief efforts of the people of Gaza, may God help them,” the statement added.
McDonald’s in Qatar is wholly and locally owned by Al Mana Restaurant and Food Company, W.L.L.
The statement confirmed it operates responsibly, is entirely socially and financially independent, and has “no connection or relationship with any practices issued by any other franchise” of the fast food chain worldwide.
In an earlier statement, the local franchise said, “McDonald’s in Israel operates as a separate entity to McDonald’s Qatar and makes its own business and communications decisions, independent of our business in Qatar.”
At the start of the war, McDonald’s Israel announced it was giving out thousands of free meals to the Israeli Forces and Israeli settlers.
In an Instagram story, the Israel enterprise said it has been donating “tens of thousands of meals” across Israel over the past few days as Tel Aviv wages one of deadliest wars on the besieged Gaza Strip.
Mcdonald’s Qatar first opened in 1995 and now boasts a total of 74 restaurants across the Gulf nation.