The Public Works Authority (Ashghal) will favour small and medium enterprises (SMEs) over international companies, Ahmad Ali al-Ansari, lead advisor for contracts and projects management at Ashghal, told MEED’s Qatar Projects conference in Doha on 16 March.

His comments came days after Ashghal and Qatar Development Bank (QDB) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to establish a comprehensive framework that specifies the responsibilities and roles between the two parties with regards to supporting local small and medium-sized enterprises in Qatar.

Al-Ansari stated at Qatar Projects that both QDB and Ashghal wanted to ensure that those enterprises were successful, “since QDB and Ashghal are considered as government entities, local SMEs will be given preference. They will still have to go through pre-qualification, but why should we go for international when it is produced locally?”

“We are going to provide work to SMEs, and provide them with information. Ashghal is going to support SMEs as much as possible”, Al-Ansari concluded.

The MoU between QDB and Ashghal is aimed at enhancing fruitful cooperation between the Public Works Authority and Qatar Development Bank in supporting and developing local industries and SMEs by providing them with opportunities to participate in the authority’s projects, in addition to providing them with financial and advisory support and guidance in order to be able to develop and expand their activities, thereby creating a sustainable economy, according to QNA, the Qatar News Agency.