Qatar 2011

In this issue

The task of turning Qatar into a well-functioning diversified economy has only just begun

Wealthy state with a big presence

The prospects for a state that is flexing its diplomatic, financial and media muscles

Foreign policy: Pragmatic pursuit of regional interests

Roula Khalaf finds that the country is treading a fine line

Al Jazeera: Heavy responsibilities of a powerful voice

The channel has come under increasing scrutiny over its coverage, which has varied in depth from country to country, reports Camilla Hall

World Cup: Eager to counter football doubters

Michael Peel reports on Qatar’s charm offensive

Labour conditions: Archaic sponsorship system in spotlight

Camilla Hall looks at life on a construction site

Politics: Rulers with time and money on their side

Elections will test ability to keep people happy, says Michael Peel

Economy: Emphasis shifts to investment

Executives are salivating over projects, says Michael Peel

Islamic finance: Banks will be divided

As of next year, Qatar’s conventional banks are no longer allowed to do Islamic banking, reports Camilla Hall

Finance: Huge infrastructure projects could develop banking sector

Camilla Hall says private lenders could benefit

Energy: Gas status puts country at centre of global forces

Michael Peel looks at the strategy designed to compete with rivals

Shell GTL: Masterstroke or a wrong turn

The fate of Pearl will be an important indicator of whether large-scale GTL has a future in Qatar and elsewhere, reports Michael Peel

Health: Medical care suffers from lack of capacity

The sector offers quality but needs more basic services, says Camilla Hall