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Qatar economy, World Cup work progressing fast


DOHA (Reuters) – The economy of Qatar, the worlds top exporter of liquefied natural gas, is set to grow 2.6 percent this year and closer to 3 percent in 2019, its finance minister told Reuters.

The Gulf Arab states economy has largely recovered from a boycott imposed by other Arab states last June and is again one of the regions fastest-growing.

Qatar moved quickly to safeguard its economy after Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut diplomatic and transport ties with Doha, accusing it of financing terrorism. Qatar rejects the allegations.

The boycott disrupted imports and triggered the withdrawal of billions of dollars of deposits from Qatari banks. But it developed new trade routes, deposited state money in its banks and helped local firms to develop output of some key goods.

“We are still doing very well and will make sure economic growth outpaces that of the region,” Finance Minister Ali Sherif al-Emadi said, forecasting private sector growth of 4 percent in 2018.