Qatar has emerged as one of the few bright spots for tourism in the Middle East following a year of social and political instability across the region, according to a new report by the World Travel & Tourism Council.
The WTCC forecasts that tourism in Qatar will grow by some 13 percent this year, the fastest in the Middle East, which is expected to see a modest overall 3 percent growth.
Syria, once one of the most attractive tourist hotspots, second only to Saudi Arabia in 2010, will likely see another dramatic fall, projected at 20.5 percent.
Last month, a separate report forecasted a near-70 percent growth in hotels for Qatar, the largest in the Middle East and Africa.
This is despite the fact that Qatar’s tourism chief has repeatedly stated that the country seeks to attract only a certain type of tourist.
To be fair, there are definitely more things to do in Qatar nowadays, especially given the art scene and all the action at Katara.