Saudi Arabia, Egypt, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, Yemen, Libya and the Maldives had just severed diplomatic ties with Qatar on Monday as it was suspected of supporting terrorism throwing the country into major turmoil and starting the biggest diplomatic crisis in the Gulf since the war against Iraq in 1991.
Some experts worried that the move made by these countries against Qatar may affect the economy if proven long-term as analysts believed that closing of Qatar’s land border with Saudi Arabia and ending of air and maritime business may have an impact on its economic growth.
In an unprecedented move, the Arab’s world largest powers had cut ties with Qatar on Monday due to the current issue it is facing.
Gulf States have closed all transport connections with Qatar giving Qataris visitors and resident fourteen days to leave and return home.
Now there are growing concerns that the closing of all land, sea and air links may cause shortages to the country since it is located on the Gulf peninsular and greatly depend on its lone border with Saudi Arabia to acquire food.
80 percent of Qatar’s food necessities are provided through bigger Gulf Arab neighbors given that the border closed, troubles in supply develop rapidly.
UAE and Saudi Arabia has halted exports of white sugar to Qatar, a significant blow to consumers especially when it is the holy month of Ramadan as demand is high. Qatari residents have also started stockpiling food and supplies.
Several Qatar-bound trucks transporting food were reported to have been stranded at the Saudi Arabian border unable to make the sole overland frontier crossing into Qatar hence creating a run on supermarkets.
According to an expatriate resident in Doha, People have also stormed into supermarket collecting food especially imported ones.
Supermarket shelves were left empty as consumers hurried to stock up on food during the crisis.
Trade sources said that until the issue settles down, shortage rising in the country is likely to continue.
The Philippine has also stated concern over the issue saying that it could affect Filipinos working overseas.
Presidential spokesman said that concerned government agencies are examining the matter and will extend assistance and other support for the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) who may feel the impact of the incident.
The Department of Labor and Employment’s (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III has announced on Tuesday to suspend the deployment of Filipino employees to Qatar.
He said that the ban is just short-term while the government looks into the impact of the crisis on the Philippines and its workers. He added that the suspension will not affect Filipino employees with existing contracts to work in Qatar.
FIFA World Cup
The spat is not only threatening supplies and overseas workers but some of Doha’s big projects as well such as the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Being selected by FIFA back in 2010 as the host, Qatar has upheld that they are a politically secured nation regardless of its location in an unpredictable area.
According to analysts, the construction division is the main driver of the Qatari economy and somewhat relies on overland means for supplies and if permits are not settled in short order, the World Cup construction could be affected.
If the necessity arises, US who were among the countries that lost the race for the 2022 competition may be taking over hosting the World Cup.
FIFA’s governing body said it was in regular contact with the organizers of Qatar 2022 and made no further comments as of the moment.