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Qatar’s population doubles in six years

Since 2004, the country’s population has skyrocketed.

July 3, 2010 10:34 by

The population of Qatar has doubled over the last six years, reports Gulf News.

The tiny country has seen the population climb to 1.69 million since 2004, driven by the local economy’s continuing growth.

Preliminary results of the latest census show that figures have jumped from 744,000, when the last census was taken in 2004.

Qatar gas reserves have turned it into the world’s wealthiest country per capita, says the paper, and Qatar’s economy has rocketed on the back of increased natural gas production. Its total population is expected to nearly double again to 3 million by 2026, according to the Ministry of Municipality and Urban Planning.

“Much of the growth in population has resulted from a steady stream of Western expatriates and migrant workers in recent years who have sought to benefit from the country’s robust economy,” says Gulf News.

But analysts expect the growth to taper off soon.

“It has been an exceptionally rapid phase of economic growth, and that’s required strong gains in the workforce. As the economy matures, the pace of demographic growth will moderate as well,” said Simon Williams, chief economist for HSBC Middle East. “Many people are involved in the buildout of Qatar’s energy infrastructure — when the work is done, they will go home.”

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