QF Headquarters QF/Facebook
Qatar Foundation is expected to lay off some 800 employees imminently, employees there have told Doha News.
The layoffs, which are apparently due to budgetary constraints, will apply “across the board” to QF staff based in Qatar.
This includes employees working in human resources, capital projects and other departments, people with knowledge of the layoffs said.
arwcheek / Flickr
Photo for illustrative purposes only. arwcheek / Flickr
While Hamad Bin Khalifa University staff would be included in this round of cuts, branch campuses of US universities and other schools in Education City will not be affected.
That's because they operate independently and under pre-negotiated budgets with QF.‘Increasing synergies'
When asked for comment about the layoffs, QF said in a statement to Doha News that it is working to improve efficiency and cut costs:
“Qatar Foundations' focus of becoming a more efficient organization requires a culture of continuous improvement and, at this time, we are identifying ways to enhance our business operations in order to safeguard the future of our organization.
Therefore, as part of our enduring commitment to the sustainability of Qatar Foundation, we are working to drive our business forward, increasing synergies by enhancing collaboration across projects, as well as examining our existing operational costs.”
Speaking to Doha News, a former QF staffer said the layoffs should not come as a surprise to anyone, as the organization has been shedding staff and programs for some time.
QF Radio QF Radio/Facebook
For example, last year QF Radio was taken off the air after a seven-year run.
Qela Gazanfarulla Khan
The Qatar Luxury Group under QF, which launched homegrown fashion brand Qela in 2013, has also lost momentum.
“Whoever is still there should not be surprised by snow in January,” said the ex-staffer, in a turn of phrase not quite applicable to a desert country. “They were expecting it.”Cost-cutting
The layoffs come amid a larger effort by the government and private companies in Qatar to operate on tighter budgets .
This has resulted in consolidation and job losses in many sectors, including oil and gas, health and transport.
Photo for illustrative purposes only. RasGas
For its part, QF is expected to offer advance notice to employees who are laid off, as well as no objection certificates.
However, officials declined to provide any specific details about the upcoming terminations, saying:
“As a prominent Qatari organization, we understand the public interest for more information regarding the aforementioned changes.
However, our priority at this point is to communicate clearly with our employees, before addressing any external requests for information.”
QF is a massive non-profit that was founded by the Father Emir and his wife, chairperson Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, 22 years ago.
It is involved in countless educational and scientific endeavors.
Are you a staffer concerned about losing your job? Thoughts?
The Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) has granted licences this year for 75 exhibitions and this number may still increase with the country's thrust on business events as a core tourism sub-sector, a senior official of Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) has said.
“The Business Events Sector forms an important part in growing the country's economy and has been identified as a priority pillar in the Qatar National Tourism Sector Strategy to attract triple the number of business events tourists coming to the country by 2030,” said Ahmed Al Obaidli, Director of Exhibitions at Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA), according to The Peninsula.
Speaking at a press conference to reveal the details of the upcoming Qatar Motor Show, Al Obaidli underlined the importance of the business events sector saying it has contributed 5.3% to Qatar's non-hydrocarbon GDP.
QTA has been working to facilitate the growth of business events in Qatar by working with the private sector to organise and deliver quality exhibitions and events. In 2015, QTA launched Qatar Business Events sub-brand to promote the country as a leading destination for business meetings, events and exhibitions.
“As Qatar's Business Events Sector has developed over the years, we have worked tirelessly with our partners in the private sector to provide the latest, most exciting and engaging experiences to Qatar's residents and visitors,” said Al Obaidli.
Al Obaidli expressed an optimistic outlook for the future of the sector with the increase in the number of exhibitions.
Qatar has made tourism as a priority industry with its many contributions to the economy including on economic diversification, job creation, and stimulating various industries.
Organised by Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) and Fira Qatar, Qatar Motor Show will be held from April 18 to 22 at the Doha Exhibition and Convention Center featuring more than 20 exhibitors including some of the leading international automotive brands that will exhibit top sports, luxury and mid-range automotive models. “Organising events such as QMS in partnership with the private sector is part of Qatar Tourism Authority's strategy to develop home-grown expos that attract international visitors, and that cultivate home-grown talent capable of hosting large-scale events,” said Al Obaidli.Everything you need to know about living in Qatar - from classifieds, events, news, community and much more..© QatarLiving.com
The news site, Al Sharq, has learned that a number of major retail markets in Doha will receive huge quantities of vegetables and fruits imported from Asian countries this year to cover the growth of domestic consumer demand, which has been remarkable since the end of last year with the increase in the number of residents.
The sources pointed out that most of the import markets will be Asian countries, and that the decline in prices of agricultural products and food in general may drive foreign imports to increase by at least 12% by the end of this year. The most important countries that have been doing business with them are India, Pakistan, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. Several business deals have also been made between Qatari entrepreneurs and Azerbaijani food companies, which have recently introduced products into the Qatari market such as juices, honey, tea, mineral water and vegetables.
Last month, Doha was visited by an Azerbaijani Export Mission to open channels of communication and cooperation with Qatari entrepreneurs and Qatari companies. This is in line with Baku's desire to boost food export rates this year to some countries experiencing rapid consumer growth, such as Qatar, UAE, China, Germany, Pakistan and others.
The rapid growth in Qatar has encouraged foreign investment, especially in fields like food production, from several European and Asian countries, as well as Africa and the United States, and the negotiation for the signing of several business deals with Qatari investors.
Qatar is keen to increase local agricultural and food production in order to reduce foreign imports by about 70% in the coming years, developing its capabilities and technologies and supporting workers in this vital sector in order to guarantee food security.
Food consumptionAccording to the GCC report, food and beverage consumption is expected to reach 51.9 million metric tonnes by 2019, with a CAGR of 3.5 percent between 2014 and 2019.
The report focused on the study of the food and beverage sector in the light of the growing population in the Gulf countries, the growth of the young population and the inflow of tourists from around the world to this region.Everything you need to know about living in Qatar - from classifieds, events, news, community and much more..© QatarLiving.com