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2010 /  Sup r e me C ouncil

of Information & Communication

T echnol ogy  A n nual Report

1/ Message from the Secretary General

2/ Building a solid foundation

for a knowledge economy

6/ Regul atory Authorit y and


18/ Cultivating Workforce and

Market Grow th in ict

24/ Serving the Public


Financial SUMMARY
Dr. Hessa Sultan Al-Jaber
ictQATAR Secretary General

For ictQATAR, the past year brought not only significant to the technologies that can improve their lives. We
growth, but also tremendous maturity in all realms of have also developed a framework for implementing
the ICT market. Our numerous efforts to spur economic virtual office environments in Qatar to create new
growth and competition, enhance public services, and employment opportunities, benefit employers, and
enrich society for all reached significant milestones. create a better work-life balance for employees.
ictQATAR will also continue to devote considerable
Competition in the telecoms market is thriving,
resources to protecting children online, and we are
bringing more choice, greater quality, and enhanced
currently conducting a comprehensive study on how
services to consumers. ictQATAR continues to develop
technology is affecting our youth’s lives and aspirations.
a more robust legal and regulatory framework to meet
the needs of the marketplace. Qatar’s new But this is just the beginning. With a strong
e-commerce law was ratified this year and ictQATAR foundation in place, we have turned our sights
is working to develop its bylaws to help organizations toward the future, including the needed preparations / 1
and individuals gain confidence in conducting business for Qatar’s hosting of the 2022 World Cup. This year,
online. And we remain committed to transparency, ictQATAR led a strategic planning process that
which is reflected in the publishing of our Regulatory resulted in the development of our 2015 National ICT
Authority’s financial summary in this report. Strategy. Though our achievements have already
brought numerous benefits for both individuals and
Through a combination of public and private
organizations, we will take bold actions in the
investment, a new high-powered satellite, Es’Hail, is
coming years.
being built, which will serve the entire MENA region
with dramatically enhanced availability and quality of We will lead efforts to improve access to information
communications services. ictQATAR helped establish and increase effectiveness of public services. We will
the Qatar Satellite Company to lead numerous satellite also guarantee the rollout and installation of a
initiatives. Other major government led infrastructure national, affordable, high-speed broadband network.
improvements, including international submarine We will work toward developing an innovative and
cables, continue to improve broadband access. entrepreneurial market and increase the quantity of
content on the Internet—including Arabic, newly
At the same time, we continue to work to ensure
digitized, and other local material. And we will
that everyone shares in the benefits of ICT through
enhance the digital literacy and skills of all members
initiatives to educate all members of society on how
of society.
they can use technology to enhance their social
interconnectivity and professional success. We have Everyone in Qatar should feel greatly empowered by
already provided free online training courses to nearly the progress we have made. I am confident we are well
2,000 people and opened Mada, Qatar’s Center for on our way to even more incredible advancements.
Assistive Technology, to connect people with disabilities
Building a Solid Foundation
For a Knowledge Economy
Annual Report 2010 

In the five years since ictQATAR was established as the independent / 3
regulator and driver of ICT innovation, Qatar has made enormous
advances, leading to rapid economic development and improvements
in government services, education, and healthcare. Through numerous
policies and programs ictQATAR is connecting people from all sectors
of society to technologies that enrich their lives and inspire confidence
in Qatar’s future.

Strong and compelling results validate the solid foundation ictQATAR

has built for an innovative and entrepreneurial ICT sector, and the
continuing success of these efforts points to even greater potential
for future growth and evolution.

2 0 10 / 150% Mobile penetration, up from

120% since 2009. And a t welve-fold incre ase
in interne t subscribers since 2001. (ictQATAR
strategic pl an, ’09 figures are from previous l andscape report)

Over the past five years, investment in the ICT ICT adoption by all sectors of society has
market by the public and private sectors has increased. Market research commissioned by
rapidly increased. In 2010, the total value of the ICT ictQATAR found that:
market in Qatar was $2.1 billion, and numerous market
• In 2010, 89 percent of households have a computer,
research studies indicate that ICT firms see Qatar as a
compared to 71 percent in 2008; 85 percent
potential technology hub and want to invest in the state.
of individuals also have a computer, compared to
Qatar’s telecommunications infrastructure 54 percent in 2008
has swiftly expanded and evolved. The continued
• Broadband usage has jumped from 41 percent of
growth of next-generation access networks with
households in 2008 to 70 percent for 2010
ultrafast connectivity has made services and
technology more prolific and reliable. Investment • Among government employees, more than 90
4 /   in a new high-powered communications satellite, percent received computer skills and text-processing
along with a growing network of submarine cables, training in the past year
will further increase bandwidth and speed.
• 60 percent of all businesses are connected to the
Market liberalization has already yielded Internet, and 58 percent have broadband
tremendous benefits to consumers and connections
businesses. With increased competition, prices
• Close to half (49 percent) of all public and private
for mobile and fixed services have dropped, but with
hospitals use electronic storage for patient data
more people using services, total revenues for the
sector grew precipitously, increasing by QAR 50 million The market and users have become more
from 2009 to 2010. Revenues for mobile services alone sophisticated. As more companies learn how to
totaled QAR 1.1 billion. leverage technological applications to streamline their
operations, Qatar’s IT software market is growing faster
Government has also been an effective market
than any other in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).
driver of ICT usage and adoption. Qatar is ranked
third in the world for ICT government readiness, Overall, 1.8 million mobile handsets were purchased
according to the World Economic Forum’s Global in Qatar in the past year, with 30 percent in the
Information Technology Report 2009–10. Through smartphone category, costing $200 or more. Mobile
the enhanced sophistication and growth of many penetration has also increased to 150 percent this
government services, especially Hukoomi, Qatar’s year, up from 120 percent in 2009. Since 2001, there
national e-government portal, ictQATAR has worked has been a twelve-fold increase in Internet
to foster a technology-friendly environment for small subscribers.
and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Annual Report 2010 

ICT has become more accessible and safe for The total estimated investment for the implementation
everyone in Qatar. The growth of Qatar’s ICT market of this strategy is QAR 6.2 billion over the five-year
is also evident in the widespread access to ICT for all period, which includes QAR 4.3 billion of capital
members of society. In the past year, ictQATAR opened expenditure and QAR 1.9 billion of operational
Mada, the Center for Assistive Technology. Though it expenditure.
just opened its doors in July, Mada has already served
To drive ictQATAR in realizing its vision, the National
more than 200 people, providing services and guidance
ICT Plan includes four main spheres of action:
to increase access for those with disabilities.
1/ Public Service Delivery: Improve access and
The launch of the Safe Space website also provides
increase effectiveness of public services. Create
a valuable resource to families, many of whom
social benefits from increasing volumes of digital
are concerned about the risks their children might
information. / 5
encounter online, including cyber-bullying and
inappropriate content. This website will help to 2/ Infrastructure and Environment: Guarantee
enhance parents’ and teachers’ comfort level with the rollout and installation of a national, affordable,
children using the Internet. high-speed broadband network with public and
private investment.
Moving Toward 2015 :
3/ Industry Development: Develop an innovative and
Qatar’s Five-Year entrepreneurial ICT market, improve the ICT skills
Strategic ICT Plan and capabilities of the workforce, create economic
benefits from increasing the quantity of content on
One of ictQATAR’s major accomplishments this year the Internet—including Arabic, newly digitized, and
was the adoption of an aggressive strategic plan other local material.
that will set the pace and goals for progress over
the next five years. A committee of public and private 4/ L iteracy, Skills, and Inclusion: Enhance digital
stakeholders representing all sectors of society literacy and skills, and improve access and usage
collaborated in crafting the plan. across all sectors of society.

Building a knowledge economy—the plan’s There are 11 different programs that exist under
overarching goal—requires new ways of thinking these spheres of action, comprising 56 actual projects
and adoption of unconventional business models. that will be implemented over the next five years.
By following this comprehensive blueprint, ictQATAR In the pages of this 2010 annual report, you will read
will ensure momentum and progress in building about Qatar’s progress and accomplishments in several
a world-class ICT market and society by reaching the different spheres, and how the strategic plan will build
goals outlined in the plan. on this rapid pace of development in the future.
Regulatory Authority
and Infrastructure
Annual Report 2010 

Competition in the telecommunications market is thriving in Qatar. Market

data indicates that growth in Qatar’s telecommunications market continues
at a steady pace:

· 17 percent growth in DSL subscriptions, with a 50 percent growth

in the number of consumers subscribing to “triple play”—a
combination package of broadband Internet, television, and landline
telephone service (Qtel report)

· Compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 139 percent of mobile

subscribers from 2006 to 2009 (IDC)
/ 7
· Rapid deployment of fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) lines
· 39 percent increase in mobile subscriptions since 2009
· 11,000 new fixed-line subscriptions in Qatar in 2010
· By the end of June 2010, a year after it entered the market, Vodafone
had garnered 20 percent of the market in terms of subscribers and 16
percent of the revenue generated from telecoms services.

The continued and rapid evolution of ICT in Qatar requires policies and
programs that encourage and facilitate growth through transparency and
fairness. It also requires a state-of-the art communications infrastructure
that enables businesses and individuals to easily implement and utilize new
technologies, and sophisticated security measures to ensure that
everything runs smoothly.

As demand for services and bandwidth surged over the past year, ictQATAR
stayed ahead of the curve, implementing its legal mandate to not only meet
current needs, but ensure that future ones are met.

Continuing the Era of Telecoms The law makes online communications and financial
transactions legally enforceable, establishing
Competition and Choice protocols for digital signatures, electronic documents,
With the issuing of the second fixed license in and authentication of payment. By enacting this law,
Qatar to Vodafone Qatar in April 2010, ictQATAR has the protections offered to business and consumers
completed the second major phase of liberalization are greatly expanded, along with ictQATAR’s
of its telecommunications sector. regulatory mandate.

Vodafone Qatar is now able to provide fixed telephone The extensive law includes provisions designating
and data services to consumers, businesses, and ictQATAR as the agency responsible for domain name
government as well as other services such as leased management. It is also the first electronic commerce
lines, international connectivity, and VSAT services. As law in the Arab region to include consumer protection
8 /   the holder of both fixed and mobile telecommunications provisions.
licenses, Vodafone will also be able to provide
In drafting the law, ictQATAR sought input from
converged services involving both mobile and fixed
relevant government entities and businesses, and
networks such as fixed/mobile data packages, if it
aligned its policies with international best practices
chooses to do so.
from the United Nations, the European Union,
and other countries and organizations to ensure
Promoting Growth, consistency.
Transparency, and Competition
ictQATAR continues to develop a more robust legal
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and
and regulatory framework. In 2010 numerous policies
Numbers (ICANN) approved ictQATAR’s authority
were introduced to meet the needs of the marketplace.
to assign domain names in October. ictQATAR is also
in the process of adopting a ccTLD (country code
E-commerce L aw
top-level domain) and second-tier domain name
To encourage businesses and government entities to
registration model.
migrate more of their transactions online, an August
2010 Emiri decree enacted the Electronic Commerce This system is expected to lead to reduced prices
and Transactions Law (e-Law). and better quality services for end users by giving
them options for creating and managing their own
websites. Previously, only Qtel offered these services.
Opening up the market to competition often has an
impact on increasing the usage of online transactions,
particularly among individuals and SMEs.
Annual Report 2010 

Marke t grow th 2008 –2010

Source: Qtel Quarterly Reports and Vodafone Management Presentations





1,000,000 Mobile
Fixed Lines
100,000 Triple Play
0 Broadband Lines
Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2
2008 2008 2008 2009 2009 2009 2009 2010 2010

Another related development is the rollout of a new Bands of spectrum exist in layers, and it is the role
domain naming system in Arabic. Once implemented, of those who regulate radio spectrum to allocate
Internet domains ending in the Arabic equivalent frequencies so technologies and devices using radio
of “.qatar” (.‫ )قطر‬can be registered in Qatar’s native spectrum can operate without interference. As the
Arabic language. Qatar was one of the first countries regulatory authority body that monitors access to
to apply for a non-Latin domain-naming system, which spectrum, ictQATAR’s role is to carefully balance
will extend the reach of ICT in Qatar. public and commercial interests in deciding allocation
and assignment.
For businesses and individuals, Qatar domain names
will be a valuable asset in distinguishing themselves in To meet this goal, ictQATAR developed a proposed
the ever-growing Internet realm, helping them connect National Frequency Allocation Plan, and completed a
with others locally and globally, while giving them a public review of its policy for allocating and assigning
distinctly Qatari identification. radio spectrum in 2010. The policy will be implemented / 9
from 2011 onward, and will ensure that the following
This will also encourage the plan for Qatar to serve
objectives are met:
as a hub for Arabic content worldwide. Right now, there
is a significant demand that has not been met—only • Provide a transparent, nondiscriminatory approach
1 percent of the content available online is Arabic, even to spectrum management
though this market represents 5 percent of the world’s
• Promote economic and societal benefits for all
spectrum users
The domains will be managed by ictQATAR through the
• Ensure public safety communications needs are met
Qatar Domains Registry, which will be launched in 2011.
• Ensure interoperability of all available
RADIO SPECTRUM ALLOCATION and communications technologies
Advances in communications technology are limitless, • Support and promote innovation and competition
but the available spectrum that makes some of these • Reduce regulatory barriers to radio frequency access
advances accessible is a finite resource. Radio
stations, cell phone operators, broadcast networks, • Reserve appropriate spectrum for future innovative
and aircraft control towers need separate frequencies technologies
to operate effectively. As more technologies are
introduced, the demands for radio spectrum grow and
must be carefully regulated.

2 0 10 / 39% incre ase in mobile

subscrip t ions since 2 0 0 9. (Qtel Quarterly
Repor ts and Voda fone M anagement Presentations )

Cl ass Licenses For both licenses, any person or entity wishing to

ictQATAR issued two telecommunications Class import and sell SRDs or camel racing equipment
Licenses in 2010. These licenses are the first of many in Qatar will still need to obtain Type Approval from
Class Licenses that will form an important part of the ictQATAR, along with the approval for dealing in
telecommunications licensing regime. telecommunications equipment.

Under these Class Licenses, persons possessing, ictQATAR is in the process of finalizing an online type
operating, or installing certain types of devices or approval register which will contain detailed
telecommunications equipment will no longer have to information on all equipment type approved by
apply to ictQATAR for a license to do so. There are no ictQATAR for sale and importation. When the registry
license or spectrum fees. is complete, commercial importers will no longer have
to apply to ictQATAR for Type Approval if they are
10 /   One Class License authorizes short-range devices authorized by ictQATAR to sell telecommunications
(SRDs), which utilize radio transmitters to provide
communications capabilities at a low radio frequency
power, minimizing the chances of causing interference
with other radio equipment. Examples of these types of
ictQATAR published its instructions for service
devices include baby monitors, hearing aids, home alarm
providers on the implementation of the Regulatory
systems, garage door openers, and meter readers.
Accounting System (RAS) this year. This sets
ictQATAR also created a Class License for Type forth the system to help demonstrate service
Approved Camel Racing Equipment, which streamlines provider compliance with cost-orientation and
the approval process for use, operation, and non-discriminatory obligations for regulated services.
installation of the equipment. Similar to the SRD
Under the Telecommunications Law and By-Law,
license, this license allows any person to own and use
ictQATAR has specific objectives and powers to ensure
camel racing equipment without having to apply for a
that the prices and charges of service providers are
separate Class License. The equipment must, however,
efficiently cost based and appropriately applied
be in compliance with the terms and conditions of
to products and services offered at a wholesale or
the Class License and operate within the authorized
retail level.
frequency bands.
Annual Report 2010 

The RAS describes a set of systems, processes, Numbering AND PORTABILITY

policies, and procedures that enable a dominant As utilization of ICT among citizens and business has
service provider (DSP) to establish a record-keeping grown in Qatar, so has the demand for telephone
system to ensure that it remains in compliance—by numbers. In recognition of the potential limitations this
keeping track of revenues, costs, assets, and capital situation could create in the future, ictQATAR took
employed; calculating tracing and analyzing costs in swift and proactive action this year to ensure that
order to demonstrate compliance with cost-orientation demand for telephone numbers, both fixed and mobile,
and non-discrimination obligations. will be met for years to come.

At the end of July, ictQATAR implemented a national

Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT)
Licensing numbering plan that included transitioning all phone
After issuing a licensing process to grant and manage numbers from seven to eight digits. By repeating
the first digit of each existing number, individuals / 11
additional VSAT licensees in Qatar, ictQATAR awarded
licenses to three operators to provide VSAT services and businesses followed a simple, straightforward
in Qatar in 2010. The licenses were awarded following procedure to modify their numbers in compliance
a competitive and transparent application process, with the plan.
involving extensive review by ictQATAR. The The transition process to new numbers was successfully
companies chosen were CapRock Communications, completed without any service disruptions. ictQATAR
QSAT Communications, and RigNet Qatar. led the process, forming the National Numbering
VSAT technology uses a system of satellites to provide Committee, and collaborating with existing providers,
telecommunications services to closed user groups. Vodafone and Qtel, to plan and prepare for this change.
This technology is essential for some of Qatar’s most
robust industries, such as oil and gas. Many of the
offshore rigs used by these companies require VSAT
technology for secure communications.

2 0 10 / 36,000,000
mobile and 9,000,000 fixed numbers
cre ated by ictQATAR’s new
numbering pl an. ( ictQATAR)

In addition, ictQATAR also conducted a comprehensive ictQATAR has already resolved several
public awareness campaign to maximize public interconnection and access disputes, disputes
knowledge of the change, and ensure that citizens between service providers, and disputes between
were aware of the rationale for the effort. service providers and their customers.

With a projected doubling of Qatar’s population by Recently, ictQATAR issued Dispute Resolution Rules
2015 and related economic growth, this transition was to deal with complaints between service providers
vital to ensure that the ICT needs of business and that do not fall within the determination process for
individual consumers continue to be met. The new plan access and interconnection disputes.
created an additional 36 million mobile and 9 million
The rules outline procedures for lodging and resolving
fixed numbers, surpassing the highest forecasted
service provider complaints, including the process for
demand for the next 20 years.
12 /   lodging a complaint, the evidence necessary in support
In 2011, mobile and fixed number portability will be of and in defense of a complaint, and the resolution
implemented in Qatar. This means phone users will be process and outcomes.
able to transfer their existing numbers to another
service provider. Under the current system, consumers CONSUMER PROTECTION AND COMPLAINTS-
seeking to switch between providers Vodafone and HANDLING PROCESS
Qtel are unable to keep their phone numbers after ictQATAR was the first telecommunications regulatory
changing over. authority in the GCC region to include customer
protection provisions in its Telecommunications Law
The Telecommunications Law, By-Law, and licenses
Since the Telecommunications Law was enacted
set out processes for resolving different types of
in 2006, ictQATAR has continued to develop its
disputes that arise in the telecommunications sector.
consumer protection function in cooperation with
Qtel and Vodafone Qatar’s initiatives in this area.

ictQATAR has a legal objective and mandate to

increase consumer benefits and safeguard their
interests, which extend to setting rules for tariff
Annual Report 2010 

pace of broadband grow th

Source: IDC Telecommunications Research 2010

Units in ‘000s Units in ‘000s

3500 300,000
3000 250,000
1000 Mobile Broadband Lines
500 50,000 CAGR (06–09) = 139%

0 0 Fixed Broadband Lines

CAGR (09–13) = 19.6%
2006 2007 2008 2009 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013
CAGR (06–09) = 139%

regulation and criteria for quality of service, and DETERMINATION REACHED in Dispute
monitoring the terms and conditions for service BETWEEN COMPETITORS
provision. ictQATAR’s recent success in effectively handling
enforcement and compliance disputes between
ictQATAR is empowered to receive and resolve telecommunications competitors is one of the clearest
complaints and disputes between service providers indications of how firmly competition regulation has
and consumers when the parties cannot resolve the taken hold. On July 22, 2010, ictQATAR resolved a
issues themselves. ictQATAR established a telephone dispute between competitors Vodafone and Qtel
hotline and email address for consumer inquiries and regarding Qtel’s provision of Virgin Mobile–branded
complaints. services. ictQATAR issued an administrative decision
Generally, a service provider must try to resolve the on the matter that was consistent with the
complaints of its customers within 30 calendar days, Telecommunications Law and international best
/ 13
following which a customer can contact ictQATAR if practices.
the complaint or dispute cannot be resolved. As the telecommunications regulatory authority,
In some cases, ictQATAR has issued orders to service ictQATAR resolved the matter by addressing
providers to pay refunds, replace equipment, carry out anti-competitive and other conduct by applying the
installations, correct bills and accounts, connect Telecommunications Law and dispute resolution
services within a specialized timeframe, and cease rules made under the law. This situation was the
and desist from certain conduct. Any decision by first application of the rules made under the Telecom-
ictQATAR to resolve a complaint or dispute is final and munications Law. The decision is published on
binding. ictQATAR’s website.

Both Qtel and Vodafone Qatar have invested

significant resources in improving legal compliance
with consumer protection and complaint-handling
requirements, as well as the quality of their customer
service centers and self-service centers in Qatar.

To raise consumer awareness of customer rights and

service provider obligations, ictQATAR regularly issues
consumer alerts and information on its website.
Es’Hail Satellite:
Expanding Communications Capacity

In May, ictQATAR announced it had entered into a

joint investment with Eutelstat to build, launch, and
operate Es’Hail, a high-powered communications
satellite. The satellite, which will operate in the
orbital slot 25.5 degrees East, will vastly increase
communications capabilities in Qatar and the
Middle East and North African regions.

This move represents ictQATAR’s most significant

public-private partnership to date, and is the first of
many planned investments in satellite technology.

By making this investment, ictQATAR will be able

to provide Qatar and the surrounding Middle East
and North African region with drastically enhanced
availability and quality of communications services,
including broadband capabilities. At the same
time, through providing the technology for these
services, ictQATAR is developing a sustainable
domestic satellite industry.

Two months after finalizing their partnership,

ictQATAR and Eutelstat announced they had signed
a contract with Space Systems/Loral to build the
satellite, which is planned for launch in early 2013.
Annual Report 2010 

broadband take-up in q atar

Source: Qtel Quarterly Reports and Vodafone Management Presentations





Total Number of Internet Lines
Internet DSL
20,000 Internet Dial-up
0 Internet VPN/MPLS &
Dedicated Access
Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q1 Q2
2008 2008 2008 2009 2009 2009 2009 2010 2010

Building Communications Broadband accessibility will continue to benefit Qatar

in a variety of ways:
Infrastructure and Capacity
• Economic Competitiveness: Solidifies Qatar’s
Qatar has experienced tremendous growth in
status as a regional hub for ICT, enabling the country
broadband capacity over the last year with 63 percent
to compete for world-class events, including its
of households connected to broadband networks
recent successful bid to host the 2022 World Cup.
with minimum speeds of 1 megabit per second.
It also stimulates investment and growth beyond the
To expand on this capacity in the future, ictQATAR
established oil and gas sectors.
is developing a strategy that can utilize the best
infrastructure possible and a combination of fixed • Social Impact: Ensures efficient delivery of
and wireless technologies. healthcare, education, and government services.

A ubiquitous high-speed broadband network provides • SMEs: Changes the way industry operates, allowing / 15
vastly increased bandwidth for managing huge small and medium enterprises to leverage facilities
data volume simultaneously and accurately. It is vital and capabilities that were previously only accessible
for improving and increasing the speed and flow of to larger companies.
• Consumers: Provides greater choice and flexibility
Building a first-class broadband network requires to individual consumers, such as “triple play”
collaboration between government agencies, services, faster access to mobile broadband
telecommunications providers, content providers, services, and enhanced availability of local and
property developers, and consumers. To facilitate relevant online content.
this, ictQATAR is spearheading plans to build the
All of these advances further reinforce the cycle of
Qatar National Broadband Network (QNBN),
positive development. Perhaps the greatest proof of
and we remain committed in its role as a convener
their intended effect is the impact these efforts have
between the country’s various stakeholders.
had on overall usage. Despite cheaper prices for
services, revenues for telecommunications providers
have increased by QAR 50 million from the first quarter
of 2009 to the first quarter of 2010. This indicates that
the amount and type of services consumers are using
have grown in tandem with increased access.

2 0 10 / 100,000+
The total number of iPark service
users. ( ictQATAR)

iParks As the national security team for ictQATAR, Q-CERT is

The provision of free wireless Internet service in three charged with ensuring the safe development of Qatar’s
parks has been so successful that ictQATAR is telecommunications infrastructure through combating
expanding this service to two more parks—the cyber crime and working to increase trust in networks.
Corniche Al-Khur and Al-Wakrah—with planned By successfully executing on these goals, Q-CERT
completion in 2011. This iParks initiative is part of helps to increase Internet usage among all members
ictQATAR’s strong commitment to connecting citizens of society and businesses.
and residents of all backgrounds to the technologies
To ensure the integrity of Qatar’s ICT infrastructure,
that will enrich their lives.
Q-CERT took numerous actions to protect networks
Currently, Rumailah, Sheraton, and Dahl Al-Hamam and individuals from denial of service attacks
offer the free service. Based on market research on and other disruptions caused by botnets and malware.
16 /   user levels from 2009 to 2010, the service is widely This team also took steps to protect users’ privacy
popular, with the average number of users per month online from risks including phishing, identity theft,
for all three parks topping 10,000, and the total number and spyware.
of users for the entire year exceeded 100,000.
Q-CERT collaborated closely with the Cyber Safety
Program on the launch of This team
Protecting Str ategic Asse ts
also worked to minimize the spread of the Stuxnet
The continued evolution of telecommunications in
computer virus within Qatar. This virus, which consists
Qatar depends on the smooth and uninterrupted
of a computer worm that attacks and reprograms
functioning of critical infrastructures. These
industrial SCADA systems, affected millions
infrastructures tend to be complex and highly
of computers worldwide, disrupting commercial
interdependent systems that control power grids, oil
operations and personal use. In Qatar, however, less
and gas production, financial transactions, healthcare,
than 1 percent of computers were affected.
water distribution, and government operations.
Annual Report 2010 

Strategic plan 2015:

the Next Five Years

ictQATAR will remain strongly committed to Q ATAR NATIONAL BROADBAND Ne t work

encouraging and enabling the continued growth and Over the next five years, ictQATAR has committed
evolution of ICT in the State of Qatar by providing a to facilitating the building of a next-generation
strong regulatory framework. This support generally high-speed broadband network with public and private
provides a basis for attracting private investment investment. This new generation of networks will be
and expertise in helping to improve the quality and combined with the latest optical communications
extent of the ICT sector in Qatar. technologies, which will increase the ICT
infrastructure, creating more bandwidth to handle
ictQATAR will seek to regulate barriers to market
larger volumes of data.
entry for companies looking to invest and will remain
platform-neutral in its policies and implementation To meet this goal, ictQATAR is facilitating the creation
of the law, including those regarding intellectual of a fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) network, which will
property rights. provide fiber connections to households and / 17
businesses. It is estimated that within five years
ictQATAR will also complete its comprehensive review
this network will replace many of the existing copper
of the telecommunications sector to determine the state
connections with high-speed fiber connections.
of competition in Qatar. The review, which will conclude
in 2011, will determine whether additional operators
would benefit consumers and the market, and what
further regulatory measures, or structural changes, if
any, would advance market competition.
Cultivating Workforce
and Market Growth in ICT
Annual Report 2010 

ictQATAR has undertaken many initiatives to spur increased ICT adoption

among businesses and make it easier for all companies to comply with
government regulations and procurement processes through streamlined
online services.

Qatar’s economy has reaped the rewards of these efforts, with broadband
connectivity among businesses increasing by 20 percentage points since
2008. And the country is ranked in the top third of countries for “ease of
doing business,” based on the World Bank’s index.

Another indication of the burgeoning ICT adoption levels throughout

Qatar’s economy is the rapid increase in spending on related products and / 19
services. According to statistics from International Data Corporation
(IDC), hardware spending on PCs, servers, and storage in Qatar increased
by 23 percent since 2009, and spending on software grew by $23 million
during the same time period.

Over the past year, ictQATAR has augmented its already robust efforts
to increase the level of entrepreneurship across all industries and
help companies both large and small adapt to a constantly evolving
ICT landscape.

IT spending in ke y vertical marke ts

Source: IDC Verticals Research 2009

Tourism & Sports 3%

Personal & Other Services <1%
Home 10% Oil/Gas 16%
Education 3%
Healthcare 1% Agriculture, Construction & Mining 2%
Discrete Manufacturing 2%
Process Manufacturing 3%
Government 15% Transport 2%

Communications 15%
Professional Services 1%

Utilities 4%
Finance 15%
Retail/Wholesale 9%

Fostering an Entrepreneurial Business Connect Forums

Environment More than 1,000 members of Qatar’s business
One of ictQATAR’s principal goals is to foster the community came together for ictQATAR’s Business
development of new domestic companies by widely Connect Forums in 2010, which included speakers
expanding incubation resources available to fledgling from Google, Qtel, and Microsoft.
start-ups. The most recent forum, held in December 2010,
To help grow a sustainable digital content industry featured a series of successful IT entrepreneurs and
in Qatar, ictQATAR’s Digital Content Incubation experts who offered their perspectives on the
Center is providing entrepreneurs in this industry implications and benefits of Qatar’s new e-commerce
with expert guidance, innovative technology solutions, law, enacted in April, for local and international
20 /   telecommunications services, office space, and companies.
accounting and legal services. The law, which clarifies important business issues
In 2010, FahrasQatar became the first spin-off such as e-signatures, e-transactions, and online
company supported by the Digital Content Incubation authorizations, creates tremendous opportunities for
Center. The center will provide support to four young entrepreneurs to develop innovative online business
Qataris who won ownership rights to the company models and offerings. Through case studies presented
through the FahrasQatar Business Case Competition, from successful e-commerce executives and panels
which attracted more than 30 entries. featuring regulatory experts, a variety of examples
and lessons were presented.
ictQATAR developed the online business directory
FahrasQatar in 2008 to provide a central forum for This forum also included a seminar on cloud computing
connecting Qatar’s businesses to customers, potential and sessions on the business offerings featured on
partners, investors, and relevant professional service Qatar’s National e-Learning Portal.
vendors. This service provides information on points
of contact and company product offerings, along with
special promotional offers.
Digitally open forum:
Promoting Innovation and Access

In October 2010, Qatar became the first GCC country

to host a conference with Creative Commons, titled
“Digitally Open: Innovation and Open Access Forum.”
The event is one of a series of efforts ictQATAR
has undertaken to foster a digitally open society and
thriving knowledge economy in Qatar.

Creative Commons is a non-profit organization that

provides expertise and resources to encourage digital
creativity, along with the sharing of ideas and
innovation online. The group also issues licenses
directly to those who want to share and protect their
digital content online. These licenses can be applied
to almost every realm of society, including music,
science, technology, art, government, and medicine

At the conference, ictQATAR brought together

renowned international panelists from Google,
Mozilla, Red Hat, and the Qatar Museum Authority
(among others) to lead seminars on openness in the
digital realms of entertainment, government, and
business. Furthermore, other leaders gave talks
and shared innovative approaches to creating wider
access to culturally relevant content. More than
600 people attended the conference, which was also
live-streamed to an even broader audience.

Building on the success of the event, ictQATAR is

leading efforts to establish an official Creative
Commons affiliate in Qatar, working with organizations
and individuals to promote greater sharing of creative
works online using flexible content rights licenses.

These licenses will promote the creation of original

digital content in the Arab world while protecting the
rights of the content creators.

An earlier forum in March centered on how information Virtual Office Environment

and communication technology can help businesses
grow and thrive in today’s global marketplace.
At the end of 2010, ictQATAR and the Ministry of
The seminar featured local and regional experts in
Labor completed a study analyzing the feasibility of
technology solutions for businesses, as well as case
leveraging technology to work from home. Through
studies from companies that have successfully
reviewing the effectiveness of working remotely in
leveraged ICT to realize cost savings and gain a
five sectors: oil and gas, government, banking, health,
competitive advantage.
and telecommunications, researchers gauged the
Speakers included top officials from ictQATAR, viability of using virtual office environments (VOEs)
MEEZA, Ali Bin Ali Technology Solutions, Doha Sooq, for jobs at various levels.
22 /   and NTG Clarity Networks. These experts offered
Their research found that there are considerable
advice on how to effectively integrate affordable
potential benefits for companies that incorporate VOEs
technologies into existing business operations and
in Qatar, including increased productivity, enhanced
how implementing other types of technology can
customer support, reduced operating costs, and wider
help transform the customer experience. ictQATAR
engagement of a larger proportion of the workforce.
is committed to helping businesses in Qatar realize
these benefits. The study also included findings indicating that both
males and females are interested in VOEs and the
improved work-life balance they could offer, and that
companies based in Qatar recognize the benefit of
incorporating VOEs into their business plans.

The findings, which have been shared with and

presented to many organizations, including Qatar
National Bank (QNB) and RasGas, will provide a
blueprint for all sectors, and include recommendations
on appropriate infrastructure and necessary
technology enhancements. In addition to the possible
advantages of VOEs to companies and individuals, they
can benefit all sectors of society by creating more
equitable access to careers and advancement.
Annual Report 2010 

Strategic plan 2015:

the Next Five Years

Entrepreneurial Socie t y Digital Content

By 2015, ictQATAR hopes to incubate 30 new Digital content includes everything from news to
companies. To reach this goal, ictQATAR will establish emails and from e-commerce to search engines. It is
funding mechanisms, including research and the basis for everything on the Internet. The creation
development grants, business networks, and ICT of digital content is an essential foundation for an
venture capital funds, to financially support creativity innovative ICT sector.
and innovation in the academic and business
Over the next five years, ictQATAR will create
economic benefits by increasing content from the
By further institutionalizing the professional ICT Arab world—specifically Arabic language content.
community, ictQATAR will also enable networking and Revenues from the sale of digital content are expected
collaboration within the ICT environment and support to more than double over the next five years in the
its growth. MENA region. / 23
Almost all large corporations, and nearly half of Qatar has a number of intrinsic advantages that will
SMEs use government websites for information and aid it in meeting this goal, including its internationally
government e-services. While this is a significant renowned media network and diverse media sector,
percentage, ictQATAR will seek to increase utilization including seven newspapers.
significantly over the next five years.
A number of initiatives will support this overarching

• A national digitization plan to digitize Qatar’s

heritage and culture, academic research,
government laws and decrees, and health research.

• The creation of local and Arabic digital content

through local media, locally hosted websites, and
the digitization of cultural artifacts and documents
will also drive the development of the ICT industry.

• Data centers being built by the government and Qtel

will expand local hosting capabilities. These will
increase competition by enabling new ISPs to enter
the market in addition to Qtel and will lead to an
increase in the provision of local digital content.
Serving the Public
Annual Report 2010 

The development of the existing integrated e-Government program—

known as i-Gov—distinguishes the Qatari government as an international
leader in the promotion of ICT. i-Gov improves the efficiency and quality
of government by providing electronic services and information to those
who live and work in Qatar.

By creating a robust and transparent online system for government

operations and the public, ictQATAR has set a swift pace for ICT adoption
across all sectors of society. Services and resources offered through
i-Gov have improved access to information and made it more convenient
for individuals and businesses to interact with government agencies.
/ 25
More than 300 information services and 60 transaction services are
currently available online through Hukoomi, Qatar’s online government
portal. Businesses of all sizes can use the automated government
e-tendering system, and citizens, residents, and visitors conducted
1.4 million fast, easy transactions using Hukoomi.

To increase government connectivity and transparency, ictQATAR

is in the process of rolling out a National Government Network—a single
ICT backbone that will connect all government entities to each other
through a single network connection.

i-Gov is in various stages of designing and implementing new services,

including recruitment services and business set-up services, with 27
i-Gov initiatives in progress, 10 of which were launched in 2010.

2 0 10 / 1.4 million tr ansactions using

Hukoomi, Q atar’s online government
portal ( ictQATAR)

Hukoomi v2 The goverment’s call center, which now provides

24-hour assistance to customers with requests,
In 2010, ictQATAR launched an improved version of queries, and complaints related to the government
Hukoomi with enhanced services that are faster and portal, was chosen as the “Best New Call Center in the
more accessible for citizens, businesses, and visitors. Middle East for 2010” at the INSIGHTS Middle East
Prior to the launch, ictQATAR conducted an extensive Call Center Awards in Dubai.
usability survey to identify areas for improvement. Improvements were also made to Hukoomi to make it
Several significant upgrades were made based on easier for various government agencies to
the study’s findings, including an updated design, independently modify the content of their online
overhaul of old content, and the addition of new points portals. Prior to this enhancement, they had to send
of access to increase the flexibility of delivery of the content to ictQATAR to be published online.
26 /   government services.
To enhance transparency, ictQATAR implemented
Some of the significant improvements made to a content management and update policy this year.
Hukoomi include: The aim of this policy is to advance the country’s
• More user-friendly navigation, including search e-government strategy.
engines and the ability to bookmark services The new standards apply to all 48 public entities with
• Mobile applications, including Hukoomi for digitized content and endorse four specific policy areas
Blackberry of government-wide collaboration:

• Hukoomi Facebook presence for providing feedback • Integration and linkage policy for common
and accessing information e-government systems and services

• Streamlined business set-up services • Hukoomi content management policy mandating

that government entities are responsible for
• More efficient delivery of ID services providing required information and maintaining
• Information for visitors on booking hotels, securing up-to-date content
tickets to entertainment events, finding restaurants, • Documentation and registration policy in
cinema and theater bookings, and mobile e-government services
location–­based services like suggesting nearby
restaurants • ICT architecture and standards policy creating
a comprehensive blueprint for the government
• Pending launch of an employment services site, IT framework, infrastructure, and application
including online job postings to fill government job standards
Annual Report 2010 

top Five Most Utilized

e-Government Services
Source: Qatar’s ICT Landscape 2011, and percentages reflect usage rates among a representative
survey group of household and resident respondents.

Violations 68%

Bills 49%

or or
Visas 27%

or or
Cards 25%

Permits/Renewing/Reactivating 17%

e-Payment Platform e-Health

This resource established a common payment platform ictQATAR will continue to support the Supreme
for all government entities, eliminating the need for Council of Health’s efforts to further digitize
outdated manual modes of cash payment. By allowing healthcare systems and records. Improved electronic
individuals and businesses to use debit and credit data storage and sharing will benefit the public by
cards to pay bills and other fees related to government enhancing healthcare through better prevention,
services and regulations, the e-Payment Platform detection, diagnosis, and treatment.
is a cheaper and more efficient method for collecting
Among e-Government services, applying for and
government revenue.
renewing health cards is one of the most popular,
Instead of having to stand in long lines, it has become ranking fourth in the top 10 of online services used by
second nature to pay water and utility bills online, pay Qataris. Furthermore, 68 percent of private hospitals / 27
parking and traffic violation tickets, and check online to have electronic storage of patient data, and almost
see the status of payments and violations. half of government hospitals (48 percent) offer the
More services came online to the platform in 2010,
and the following five were the most frequently used The Supreme Council of Health and the Hamad
e-Government services by individuals in Qatar: Medical Corporation have begun efforts to build a
unified health records system, and 500 employees,
1/ Settling Traffic Violations
including doctors, nurses, and therapists, have already
2/ Paying Utility Bills been trained in how to use the system.

3/ Applying for/Renewing Visas

4/ Applying for/Renewing Health Cards

5/ Applying for/Renewing/Reactivating New

Residence Permits
Creating a More Accessible Society

On the seventh floor of ictQATAR’s headquarters, “Using our imagination in applying these resources is
automatic doors open more widely to accommodate very important,” according to David Banes, deputy
visitors in wheelchairs who come to Mada, the director of Mada. “It’s about being creative in mixing and
state-of-the-art Center for Assistive Technology. But matching solutions based on each individual’s needs.”
the center doesn’t just serve those in wheelchairs.
Indeed, one of Mada’s most valuable resources is
It offers a range of tools, software, and services to
the expertise of the people who work there. Banes
help people with any combination of physical and
and others play a vital role as international advocates
learning differences to more fully interact with society.
for people with disabilities through staying on top
Keyboards with enlarged colored letters for the of the newest developments in assistive technology,
visually impaired and software that provides symbols and serving as advocates for the development of
with words to help dyslexic learners read are just a Arabic language adaptations of these solutions.
few of the tools available to meet Mada’s goal of Many common adaptations, such as voice recognition
fostering greater equality and empowerment for software, are not available in Arabic.
people with disabilities.
Over the next year, Banes expects Mada’s staff to
A staff of 10, some of whom know the challenges of double. As the center expands, Mada will continue to
being disabled from firsthand experience, are available add more resources to serve a wider swath of the
to help anyone who enters Mada find appropriate population. After all, almost everyone will deal with
solutions to their needs. The center also offers a loan the challenge of having a disability at some point
bank of cutting-edge technology items for anyone to in their lives.
try out at home or at work before investing in such
That’s why, Banes says, it’s important for Mada’s staff
to expand access to its resources and develop ongoing
Since opening in June 2010, Mada has already helped relationships with the people they serve. “They may
200 people by assessing their needs and making come in wanting to learn something as basic as how to
recommendations. They have also trained more email, but then they come back asking how they can
than 100 other individuals in identifying and using play games or do other more complex things,”
appropriate solutions for people with various according to Banes. “Once you open the door, they kick
disabilities. it down permanently.”

2 0 10 / Almost 2000 INDIVIDUALS completed

free online e-le arning courses offered
through ictQ ATAR’s National E-Le arning
Portal. ( ictQATAR)

e-Learning e-Education
The presence of a strong and innovative ICT sector Qatar continues to serve as a regional leader in
can attract foreign investment and lead to a integrating ICT into its K–12 educational system.
self-perpetuating cycle of job growth. To enhance
As of 2010, it had achieved:
digital literacy and skills, ictQATAR’s National
e-Learning Portal offers more than 3,000 free online • 60 percent of schools have broadband access
courses to government employees, ICT professionals,
• 100 percent of schools have PCs
and the unemployed in a variety of fields including
business, information technology, human resources, • Majority of teachers have had ICT training
and marketing.
ictQATAR will also establish a working group to
30 /   With access to these resources, all participants in implement outreach, awareness, and training
Qatar’s economy benefit. These courses help initiatives, and a working group to develop a cyber
individuals gain additional qualifications and become safety learning program.
marketable for high-demand jobs. They also offer
training for recent grads, aiding them in making the K-Net
transition from school to work. Businesses also
benefit—SMEs build in-house capabilities that they Knowledge Net (K-Net), ictQATAR’s e-learning
might not otherwise have the resources to develop. platform, is the cornerstone of ICT adoption within
Furthermore, these enterprises also attract companies Qatar’s education system. Since K-Net launched five
to Qatar through cultivating a highly-skilled workforce. years ago as a pilot project in eight schools, it has
expanded to 37 schools and 40,000 users nationwide.
In the past year, ictQATAR’s e-learning efforts
increased significantly: Through K-Net, technology is integrated into the
learning process instead of being treated as a
• Almost 2,000 people completed online courses separate goal. The system has allowed teachers to
• 30 percent of state employees completed IT training transition to virtually paperless classes. Schools
have reported increased student engagement and
• 20 percent of nurses completed IT training completion of homework assignments.0
• 15 percent of non-IT business employees have The learning management experience for teachers
undergone IT training is enhanced by a feature that allows them to sync their
lesson plans to the school’s rubric and conveniently
track which learning goals their lessons are meeting.
Students are also easier to manage, thanks to features
that K-Net provides to keep faster learners occupied
while slower ones are still completing in-class
Youth study:
Determining Current and Future Trends

More so than ever before, technology has transformed

the way younger generations communicate and access
information. In recognition of the tremendous influence
ICT has on children and young adults, ictQATAR has
commissioned a comprehensive study to understand
how Qatari youth are affected by and use ICT in their
daily lives.

A committee of academics, researchers, policymakers,

youth advocates, and young people are contributing
to a groundbreaking analysis using data from 1,200
young Qataris ages 11 to 29. Through exploring how
this group accesses online content and communicates
with each other, the findings will provide insight into
how ICT shapes their identity in relation to their peers
and the world.

From these findings, ictQATAR will be able to make

policy recommendations on how to best harness the
power of ICT to help young people realize their full
potential, and develop a framework to assess the
impact of ICT on youth, which can then be replicated
in other Arab countries. Furthermore, the baseline
information this study provides can be used in the
future to provide a comparative assessment of the
socioeconomic impact of ICT on this age group.

student confidence with it tasks

Source: Qatar’s ICT Landscape 2011

Text Processing 89%
Using Email 88%
Creating Presentations 86%
Downloading Software 64%
Using Spreadsheet Software 71%
Online Chat 67%
Installing Hardware/Software 61%
Creating Web pages 35%
Troubleshooting 50% School Students
Software Programming 28% University Students

assignments. e-Maturity Assessment

K-Net continues to expand its capabilities for users. As the pace of technological change accelerates,
In the past year, K-Net conducted seminars for educators across the world are faced with the
teachers and administrators on crisis management so classroom challenge of how to best integrate
they can continue their teaching virtually, with minimal technology into their lessons in a way that maximizes
interruptions, in the event of a national emergency that the student’s engagement and retention of the
prevents students from attending school in person. material. Reaching this objective is more crucial than
The quality of this portal earned ictQATAR and the ever before, as students must become adept at
Supreme Education Council an ACN Arab Technology utilizing and applying rapidly changing technology
Award for creating the “Education Implementation to be prepared for careers in an information-based
of the Year.” economy.
32 /  
To ensure that Qatar’s schools are remaining ahead
Collaborating on e-Education of the curve, 26 public and private schools have
completed a pilot with the eMARQ system. This
ictQATAR and the College of the North Atlantic-Qatar
system allows them to assess their “e-maturity”
held their third annual “Exploring ICT in Education
by answering a number of questions about the nature
Conference,” in March, to provide a regional forum
and extent of ICT adoption in their schools.
for exchanging information and ideas on the most
effective ways to utilize technology as a catalyst for School leaders are asked to rank various measures
change and innovation in schools. of integration and curriculum content on a scale of
1 to 5. Based on the results, the assessment suggests
More than 450 teachers and administrators from
actions a school can take to improve its scores. It even
across Qatar participated in workshops and attended
provides a tool to calculate budget estimates related
seminars, led by international experts in e-education.
to future technological needs.
The day prior to the conference, both students and
teachers participated in “Digital Star” competitions to
showcase innovative ways that technology had been
incorporated into their lesson plans and classroom
Digital qatar:
continuing a dialogue with
tech enthusiasts

As part of its goal to stay ahead of the curve on social

media, ictQATAR launched Digital Qatar, a blog for
technology enthusiasts. The blog is a hub of news and
discussion of the latest ideas and technological
advancements, and explores the boundless potential
of information and communication technology.
ictQATAR launched this blog in 2009 with the purpose
of providing a platform for genuine thought and
conversation in Qatar around everything ICT.

Digital Qatar is available in both Arabic and English,

and represents one of the first blogs on technology
available in Arabic. The wide range of posts includes
features on the impact of social media forums
like Facebook and FourSquare, and insight into the
impact technology has on current events, including
perspectives on the role ICT developments played in
Qatar’s winning its 2022 FIFA World Cup bid.

This blog also provides another forum for the public

to learn about the benefits of ICT for their daily lives,
both personal and professional, through informative
content on issues including password strength,
cyber-bullying, and Creative Commons licenses. For
ictQATAR, the blog is one of a host of social media
outlets it leverages for engaging with the public. In
fact, ictQATAR is active in 14 social media outlets—in
both English and Arabic —and has built a network of
more than 3,000 friends and followers on the social
networking sites Facebook and Twitter. These forums
provide Facebook friends and Twitter followers with
real-time alerts on the latest ictQATAR news, events,
and technology trends.

Due to the widespread popularity of ictQATAR’s

social-networking sites, their followers have become
part of the greater ICT community in Qatar, often
initiating their own technology-related conversations,
commenting on policies, and “re-tweeting” ictQATAR
tweets to their network of followers. Recently,
Twitaholic named ictQATAR one of Qatar’s top 10 most
popular Twitter accounts.

Convening Thought Leaders Dr. David Reeves, the former president and CEO of Sony
Computer Entertainment Europe, told the crowd that
From Around the World
“Markets consist of human beings, not demographic
ictQATAR’s Connected Speaker Series brings
sectors. The Internet is enabling conversations among
numerous global and regional thought leaders to Qatar
human beings that were simply not possible in the era
to share their insights on current trends and future
of ‘mass media.’”
developments in ICT, and how these will affect society
and the economy. Speakers also offered their thoughts on a range of
issues, including industry initiatives, the development
Gerd Leonhard, described by the Wall Street Journal
of social and cultural aims, the role of formal learning
as “one of the leading media futurists in the world,”
in informing digital literacy, and the protection of
shared his perspective on some of the most
34 /   minors and others from inappropriate material.
provocative issues the media industry is currently
facing, including the future of content, potential In April, ictQATAR partnered with the Center for
opportunities for revenue generation from online International and Regional Studies at the Georgetown
content, and the biggest potential markets that exist. School of Foreign Service in Qatar to host a talk on
“The Future of the Internet.” This event featured
“Without a doubt, data is the new oil,” according
Michael Nelson, an internationally known expert on
to Leonhard. “Over 4 billion connected users will
next-phase computing, and a visiting professor of
generate zetabytes of data, every single day, by
Internet studies in Georgetown’s Communication,
commenting, rating, tagging, forwarding, uploading,
Culture, and Technology Program.
and sharing content.”
As the former director of Internet technology and
In 2010, additional speakers attracted hundreds of
strategy at IBM, and a trustee of the International
guests from various industries, as the issues discussed
Institute of Communication, Mr. Nelson offered
during these talks have far-reaching implications for ICT.
unparalleled insight on the impact the Internet, and its
As part of this series, the International Institute of continuing evolution, will have for content and media
Communications (IIC), in association with ictQATAR, industries, development of government policies, and
organized and hosted a Digital Communications Literacy academia.
Forum in February. The forum explored issues related to
According to Nelson, “we’re less than 15 percent
the role digital literacy can play in the further evolution
through this transformation that’s enabled by the
of the new communications environment in the Middle
Internet,” and while only 15 to 20 percent of people in
East, and included ideas for ways to best reach this goal
the world use the Internet on a regular basis, that
while advancing economic and social objectives.
number is projected to grow by a factor of up to 50.”
During the day-long gathering, a number of
international experts shared their insights on the
importance of digital media literacy and its key
contributions to changing how e-marketers devise
their online strategies.
Annual Report 2010 

Strategic plan 2015:

the Next Five Years

i-Gov through its newly established program, Internet and

Over the next five years, i-Gov will be continuously Society. This program will serve as a research hub for
improved with a customer-centric focus on the users of studying Internet technology, policy, and economics.
government services. It will aim to further modernize
Within those broad areas, the overarching objective of
the e-services, including:
the research will be to determine the most effective
• Complete a single ICT backbone by which each ways for individuals and businesses to benefit from ICT
government entity will connect to all other innovations. The Internet and Society program will
government entities through a single network also collaborate with similar centers around the world,
connection including ones at Harvard, Stanford, and Oxford.

• Establish a centralized government data center to

E-He alth
house critical computer systems and associated / 35
Precise and accurate information is essential to
components for all government entities
high-quality medical care and related health services.
• Institute a service-oriented next-generation By providing access to health records and advanced
government architecture that provides a next- diagnostic systems, the Supreme Council of Health
generation ICT framework for interoperability and the will significantly improve the quality and delivery of
seamless exchange of information and data between healthcare for all members of society.
all government entities and the users of their services
One key project to meet this goal is the rollout of an
electronic health record system that is available to
health providers and all citizens through Smart Cards,
To enhance the social and economic development of
which are linked to Qatari IDs.
Qatar, and ensure that all members of society can
benefit from technological progress, ictQATAR will
undertake numerous initiatives through its ICT and
Society programs. To increase adoption and access, ictQATAR has worked
with the Supreme Education Council to build on its efforts
Skill development programs to enhance digital literacy to empower educators with the required skills, knowledge,
across the entire population and further develop ICT and resources to facilitate 21st-century learning.
skills within its workforce will be one of the linchpins
of ictQATAR’s work. At the K–12 level, ICT education will be expanded to
enhance and integrate ICT into the curriculum of
To enhance digital literacy and skills and increase classrooms in all public and private schools, improving
usage levels, ictQATAR will develop an accessibility students’ 21st-century skills and piquing their interest
policy and guidelines to ensure that all e-services are in pursuing ICT careers.
accessible to all constituents, particularly individuals
with special needs. At the university level, initiatives to be implemented
will improve the skills of students and support the
As Qatar continues to advance in the digital age, marketability of ICT graduates by developing intensive
ictQATAR will also closely follow the impact of the ICT educational programs, on-the-job training, internship
Internet and its governance on the progress of society programs, and international exchange programs.
safe space:
Helping Children Stay Safe Online

With the recent launch of Safe Space, a website for The website provides adults and children with tips
teachers, parents, and families, ictQATAR has created on how to handle a range of scenarios and issues
a vital information resource dedicated to protecting children might confront online, whether they are using
youth from online risks, including cyber-bullying, chat rooms, downloading emails with attachments,
inappropriate content, and solicitations. or surfing the web.

This is significant because Qatari parents cite safety Both parents and teachers can take cyber safety
as their top concern related to their children using self-assessment quizzes, and find information about
the Internet. At the same time, the vast amount of how to talk to children about cyber safety. To further
information and interaction that the Internet provides supplement their knowledge, ictQATAR has provided
enriches the engagement in learning and the online workshops to train teachers about these issues.
literacy of young people.
The public campaign is meeting strong public
By providing clear and comprehensive guidance demand, as more schools have requested workshops
and tips, Safe Space helps families strike a balance to learn more about these issues, and parents have
between helping their children develop essential asked schools to provide them with more information
digital skills that can boost their academic on how to keep their children safe.
success—and intellectual curiosity—and minimize
To ensure that everyone can access this information,
their exposure to online risks.
ictQATAR is creating a hotline for families and
ictQATAR launched Safe Space with a public educators to call to report online threats on children
awareness campaign with the motto “Keep Them Safe, and receive guidance on how to handle individual
Keep Them Curious,” featured in advertisements at situations.
movie theaters and on radio, television, and billboards,
to widely promote the benefits and resources Safe
Space offers to all members of society.


Financial SUMMARY
For the period from April 1st, 2009, to March 31st, 2010
Annual Report 2010 


Final part of license opportunity fee for second mobile license 3,086,537,011

Technical license and telecommunications authorization fees 19,842,328

1% License fee for fixed and mobile telecommunications service providers (July 2009 - December 2009) 22,496,036

12.5% Industry fee for fixed and mobile telecommunications service providers (July 2009 - December 2009) 82,920,795

Total Regulatory Authority Revenues 3,211,796,170



Professional Services 456,983

Administration Expenses 2,546,122

/ 39
Payroll Expenses 14,468,127

Total Operating Expenses 17,471,232


Regulatory Authority Projects 9,007,921

Other Capital Expenditures 62,236

Total Capital Expenditures 9,070,157

Total Regulatory Authority Expenses & Expenditures 26,541,389

Ye arly Comparison

2009–2010* 2008–2009** 2007–2008**

Payroll and Allowances 14,468,127 15,151,749 8,775,507‫ححححح‬

Operating Expenditure 12,011,026 17,546,197 26,722,499‫ححححح‬

Capital Expenditure 62,236 36,700 3,780‫ححححح‬

Total Expenditures 26,541,389 32,734,646 35,501,786‫ححححح‬

* Fiscal Year 2009–2010 was audited and verified by Deloitte & Touche.
** Fiscal Years 2005–2009 were audited and verified by the State Audit Bureau and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

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