On Tuesday 6th November, Major Events International (MEI), held a briefing and networking seminar which sought to highlight both the opportunities for companies with an interest in growing a business in Qatar, with particular reference to the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

The event was opened by John Hawkins, until earlier this year our Ambassador to Qatar, who provided a fascinating insight into how Qatar has evolved over the last decade. Drawing upon his vast experience in the region, John detailed how recent developments have had a huge influence on both the opportunities within Qatar and also how the nation is now perceived by the International Community.

John was then followed by the rest of the speakers, who all gave a unique perspective on the opportunities that Qatar provides, while also explaining some of the challenges of doing business within the nation and how to overcome them. Particular emphasis was placed upon the positive perception of ‘Britishness’ within Qatar and the opportunities for companies to capitalise upon the pedigree that the UK has gained from successful delivery of the London 2012 Olympics.

The speeches were followed by a lively debate amongst the 50 or so delegates with an overriding consensus emerging that Qatar must now be viewed as a nation of vast business potential for UK firms. However, the speakers were quick to emphasise that maximum benefit could only be obtained with strategic pre-planning and research with particular significance given to the importance of understanding and respecting the Qatari culture of doing business.

As MEI’s first Qatari Event, we are particularly pleased with the hugely positive feedback that has thus far been received. The event has been described as a great success with particular praise awarded to the extensive knowledge of the speakers and also the conversational and open nature of the briefing.

Christopher George, NuVision Abroad – “Thank you for inviting me to the absolutely superb Qatar Briefing this week. You assembled yet again a great team of speakers and I learnt a lot”. 

olympic procurement opportunities

The Panel: Left to right: Richard Birks (Senior Partner at Eversheds), Duncan Hill (Business Specialist at UKTI), Dennis Mills (CEO of MEI), Dennis Cox (CEO of Risk Reward), John Hawkins (ex-Ambassador to Qatar).

John Hawkins, Former British Ambassador to Qatar opened with a fascinating insight into the nature of Qatar’s social, economic and political development as it strives to position itself as a key player in the Gulf Region.

Dennis Cox, CEO of Risk Reward, followed John with an incredibly informed and knowledgeable speech which detailed his own experiences of doing business in Qatar and further explained the current economic situation within the nation.

Richard Birks, Senior Partner at Eversheds, drew upon his own experience of living in Qatar for three years to give an extremely comprehensive presentation of the key legal issues which new market entrants need to be aware of before rushing to get established in Qatar.

Duncan Hill, Business Specialist at UKTI, provided an extremely interesting perspective of why Qatar is such a High Value Opportunity by highlighting the vast infrastructure investment that the country is receiving around the World Cup and the opportunities that this will provide for UK businesses.

Future Events: MEI has a busy final two months ahead to round off the Jubilee and Olympic year with another two events being staged before the end of the year:

14th November – ‘Opportunities in Brazil leading up to Brazil 2014 and Rio 2016’: Central Belfast, NI.

6th December – ‘The Cyber Threat to Major Events – Reflections and Challenges: London 2012 and Rio 2016’: Central London.

In terms of attending international Expos and Conferences, MEI will be taking clients to both Expo Estadio in Sao Paulo and Soccerex in Rio, both taking place in November. MEI has a stand at both expos and shared stand space is available to companies wishing to reduce the cost of attendance and display at these highly prestigious expos.

During 2013, MEI will maintain a busy calendar by running a number of regular events. These events will continue to focus upon the business opportunities provided by the upcoming major events in Brazil, Russia and Qatar. For further information around please visit http://www.majoreventsinternational.com/Events%20Flier.pdf

Should you wish to speak at these events, take the opportunity to show-case your organisation or simply just attend, then please contact Piers Lawson on +44 (0)20 7934 9008 or  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Additional information