The cost of living in Qatar rose by 2.6 percent last month compared to the previous March, new data from the Ministry of Development Planning and Statistics (MDPS) has shown.
March was the third consecutive month that prices have gone up here, though the figures suggest the rate of the increases has slowed.
Once again, rent put the most pressure on the Consumer Price Index, rising 5.7 percent year-on-year when combined with fuel and energy costs. Almost every other category in the basket of prices also went up, including:
- Garments and footwear (3.5 percent);
- Furniture, textiles and home appliances (3.8 percent);
- Medical care and services (1.4 percent);
- Transport and communications (1.6 percent); and
- Entertainment, recreation and culture (2.1 percent).
Miscellaneous goods and services, which include the price of gold, fell 2.2 percent from the previous March.
While year-on-year prices reflect large cost increases, the change from February to March 2014 appear far less pronounced.
The price of furniture and home appliances, for example, rose only .1 percent from February to March of this year, while entertainment fell .2 percent.
Meanwhile, the cost of medical care stayed the same over the past three months – likely due to last year’s price freeze that the Supreme Council of Health imposed as it works to implement a new health insurance scheme.
More stable prices come after Qatar’s new Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, pledged to keep inflation down as the country moves forward with dozens of construction projects ahead of the 2022 World Cup.
Still, rising costs have put many residents in a difficult position, with some deciding to move outside of the capital city of Doha to make ends meet. Meanwhile, a recent comparison of like-for-like costs across the GCC concluded that Qatar was the most expensive place to live in the region.
slow news day?
Prices will go down when the construction ceases. At the moment it’s the only sector that is actually attracting most of the people to come to Qatar. Most of the expats work in construction related companies and this is where the money come from. Most of the money that are spent n Qatar by expats, come from construction sector. There is nothing else that this economy produces at the moment. When construction ends, demand for houses will drop dramatically. Seriously, has anybody ever thought what is going to happen if all the expats that work for construction projects leave Qatar? Even the population will go back to 500k…What will happen with all the buildings that ar currently occupied with construction professionals.???