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Qatar has the largest non-associated gas field in the world and 13% of world’s natural gas reserves. Qatar is the world’s largest producer and exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG). Since 2012 and the end of the development of the gas industry, economic growth has relied on non-hydrocarbon sector activity: industry, infrastructure (linked to the 2022 World Cup) and services. The Saudi-Emirati embargo on Qatar has worsened economic prospects, but it is manageable for Qatar as it benefits from alternative (albeit at a higher cost) trade channels, and can rely on a sizeable sovereign wealth fund (twice its GDP) to support the financial sector. The extension of sanctions to the financial sector or heightening regional tensions that would disrupt the LNG routes would be much more damaging, but it remains a low-probability scenario. New LNG export capacities are due to come on stream by 2023-25, with an expected 40% increase in capacity, providing significant additional hydrocarbon revenues. The QAR is pegged to the US dollar.

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