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Qatar to levy airport tax on passengers

Passenger leaving Qatar from Doha's Hamad International Airport will be charged £7,10 for using facilities.

Picture: freeimages.com.

BENGALURU - Qatar's government will levy a new airport tax on passengers

from Tuesday as the country seeks new revenue streams amid falling oil prices.

Every passenger leaving Qatar from Doha's

Hamad International Airport, including transit passengers, will be charged £7,10

for using airport facilities, according to a statement by the airport.

The charge will apply to tickets issued after

30 August and for any travel starting on 1 December onwards and would be used to

"further increase the airport's capacity and invest in new

infrastructure", the statement said.

Airport fees, while common elsewhere in the

world, have until recently been avoided by Gulf states as they seek to gain a

competitive advantage for business and become regional hubs.

Some 1.33 million passengers travelled

through Hamad International Airport in June.

Airports in the United Arab Emirates

announced similar taxes earlier this year.

Interest rates are rising in the Gulf as low

oil prices pressure governments' finances, so Qatar has been looking at ways

other than borrowing to fund its projects, including raising local gasoline

prices.

Qatar has said it expects to post a deficit

of £9,44 billion in 2016, its first in 15 years, and to run a deficit for at

least three years as low natural gas and oil prices weigh on its revenues as it

prepares to host the soccer World Cup in 2022.

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