Risk Management Report: Qatar
The Al-Thani family has ruled Qatar since the mid-19th century, its power entrenched at the end of the Ottoman Empire with British recognition of its right to govern. Independence was declared in 1971. In recent decades, the tiny state has gained hugely in power, confidence and wealth; the population has boomed, from around 111,000 in 1970 to 2.2m today (around 85% expatriate). Instrumental in Qatar’s rapid development were former emir Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa and his prime minister Sheikh Hamad Bin Jassim (HBJ). During their time in office, Qatar became known for its energetic foreign policy, as well as the extreme wealth which has seen its GDP per capita – expected by the International Monetary Fund to be around $93,535 in 2015 – become the highest in the world.