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real estateOctober 20, 2020

Pandemic may push developers to introduce new suite of real estate products: KPMG

KPMG recently released its Real Insights Qatar publication, which highlights and tracks the quarterly changes in the real estate market across the timeline of January to June 2020.
The publication covers trends and examines the behaviour of four core sectors of Qatar real estate: commercial office sector, residential sector, retail sector and hospitality sector.
Anurag Gupta, Director and Head of Strategy and Real Estate at KPMG in Qatar said: “Due to the pandemic, the traditional office methods had to make way for the new-age digital ‘work from home’ concepts, adding uncertainty to the future use of conventional office spaces. Though many leading companies globally could be seen encouraging the idea of mixed work-space environments, we believe Qatar will continue to pursue the traditional method, with few exceptions, while making relevant changes to in-office designs and enhancing digital capabilities to tackle any such situation in future. It is highly expected that new real estate products may enter the market to address the changing consumer behaviours.”
In the residential sector, during the pre COVID -19 phase during Q1 2020, the affordable segment experienced increased vacancy levels. This was primarily due to the movement of tenants seeking attractive deals in the middle-income housing areas of Doha. However, since the outbreak of COVID-19, the overall activity in the residential market was not encouraging, with an impact on number of new inquiries.
In the retail market, the substantial annual increase in overall retail floor area since 2016 has resulted in an increasingly challenging market. With the expected opening of Doha Mall in Abu Hamour, The Place Vendome in Lusail and Northgate Mall in Izghawa (on Doha Expressway) by 2021, KPMG concludes that the competition is set to intensify further with implications on rentals.
“The year 2020 is set to be a challenging year for the tourism industry in Qatar. The external shocks arising from the COVID-19 pandemic interrupted the recovering tourism sector. Qatar’s tourism industry faced substantial headwinds over 2017 and 2018, caused by the blockade; however, the sector recovery in 2019 was remarkable.While Qatar’s hospitality was one of the most affected sectors with complete shutdown of tourist activity, it was among the first to extend support in tackling the COVID-19 situation in the country,” concluded Gupta.