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Wed 26 Feb 2014 01:42 PM

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Qatar flags ramp up in defence spending

Gulf state set to bolster defence capabilities with big orders planned - report

Qatar flags ramp up in defence spending
Qatari army helicopters take part in the military parade marking the Gulf emirates National Day celebrations in Doha on December 18, 2012. (AFP/Getty Images)

Qatar is set to bolster its defence capabilities with big orders planned for defence equipment, naval ships and submarines at the upcoming Doha International Maritime Defence Exhibition and Conference, it was reported.

While no figure was given on the planned spend, Assistant Minister of State for Defence Financial Affairs Brigadier Thani A Rahman Al Kuwari said “we have plans to put orders for defence equipment as we intend to have more (equipment and naval ships) than what we have”.

“We also have plans to acquire submarines and lots of naval ships,” he told The Peninsula Qatar on the sidelines of a press conference to announce details of the fourth edition of the Doha International Maritime Defence Exhibition and Conference in March.

Asked about Qatar’s defence budget for the next five years, Al Kuwari, also the Chairman of DIMDEX 2014, said: “As every country participating in the event has certain defence budget, we also have specific budget and plans to upgrade our forces.”

“It is not possible to say how much the budget is, it is about how many of a specific kind of equipment you need in your forces. We will announce details of our orders during the exhibition.”

DIMDEX 2014 will feature over 70 exhibitors from across the world.

In addition to defence equipment suppliers, more than 18 warships of various sizes from 10 countries, including India, Pakistan and Turkey, are also expected to participate.