WTO Doha: Information Regarding the 4th WTO Ministerial Conference.

Following the decision of the General Council of the WTO on February 2001 to designate Doha-Qatar as the venue for the 4th WTO Ministerial Conference, the Qatari Government established an Organizing Committee with a view to oversee the logistical and other preparatory aspects of the Ministerial Conference. This was its website.

Organizing Committee

The Organizing Committee has twelve members. It is headed by the Ministry of Finance, Economy and Commerce and has representatives from other ministries and state bodies that are either directly related to the preparation process or with first hand experience in organizing previous successful conferences in Doha.
The Committee established 9 task forces, each dealing with a particular aspect of the Ministerial Conference.

The 9 task forces are the following:

  •  Task Force for protocols
  •  Task Force for transportation and accommodation
  •  Task Force for media affairs
  •  Task Force for security affairs
  •  Task Force for medical affairs
  •  Task Force for logistics and meetings support
  •  Task Force for coordination with the WTO
  •  Task Force for telecom
  •  Task Force for financial affairs

The Organizing Committee since its inception, has been coordinating closely, and will continue to do so, with the WTO secretariat and members to ensure that the preparations in the run-up to the WTO 4th Ministerial Conference are conducted in a smooth, fair and transparent manner.

The Organizing Committee, the members of the task forces and their secretariat remain committed to the common objective of turning the 4th Ministerial Conference into a successful and historical event for Doha and the world.
We look forward to seeing you in Doha during the 4th Ministerial Conference.

The Organizing Committee
P.O. Box 22240
Doha  -   State of Qatar
Fax :  +  974  4 830 923

WELCOME TO QATAR

Welcome to the land of mystery and surprises! Qatar has so much to offer. Enjoying some of the tours, safaris and excursions is virtually a must. Not only is there much to see, but there is much to learn and understand well. A vibrant combination of old and new greets the visitor, and a half-day guided tour through the “souqs” (old markets), provides a fascinating insight into the local culture. Overnight safaries into the desert combine sand, sun and first-hand experience of the traditional Arabic lifestyle. Virtually no aspect to life in Qatar is left to the guidance on all aspects of culture, adventure and exploration. Come – and see the difference!

Hotels

Sheraton Doha HOTEL & RESORT


Waterfront setting on the north promontory of Doha Bay, adjacent to the capital city’s newest commercial district. Close to the Diplomatic Area, Qatar International Exhibition Centre, Khalifa International Tennis & Squash Complex and Doha Golf Club. Less than a 15 minute drive from Doha International Airport and the centre of the city. Set in 70 acres of landscaped gardens.

Accommodation:

370 rooms including 65 suites. 24 hour room service. All rooms have individual temperature control, radio, color TV with in-house movie channel, Cable TV, private balcony, mini fridge, IDD Telephone, voice mail and separate comfortable seating arrangements.

305 Standard & Executive rooms, including 47 non-smoking rooms. 32 Junior Suites, 10 Executive, 7 Diplomatic, 4 Penthouse, 5 Presidential, 2 Royal and 5 Head of State. All with panoramic sea view. Express check-in/out facilities on the Executive Club Floor, which has a  private hospitality lounge and 24-hour butler service. New Towers Floors open in July 2001.

Corporate Facilities:

Full Service Business Centre; secretarial, fax, postal  & courier services; Internet access; photocopying & binding facilities; computer hire; mobile phone rental.
The Conference Centre has state-of-the-art audio visual and recording facilities and can accommodate up to 5,000 delegates with options for simultaneous translation in seven different languages.

Doha Marriott Gulf Hotel

Location:

In landscaped gardens on the Eastern shores of Doha Bay, with a panoramic view of the city and the Gulf. Only five minutes away from Doha International Airport or the city centre. A fifteen minute drive from the new commercial district and the Qatar International Exhibition Centre and 25 minutes away from the Doha Golf Club.

Accommodation:

352 rooms, including 44 suites and 41 non-smoking rooms. Guests staying in the Executive Tower have use of the Executive Lounge and a complimentary “heralthy start” breakfast in the morning. Individual Climate  Control; Interactive TVs; built-in keyboard for WebTV browsing; In-House Pay Movies; Mini-bar; hairdryer;shavers; safes; 24-hour room service. Each of the Tower rooms has two telephone lines, making for ease of Internet access. Telephones have speed dial and speakerphones.

Corporate Facilities:

Two large ballrooms with state-of-the-art audio visual equipment provide seminar, meeting and entertainment facilities for up to 1,000 people. Business Centre offering full range of support services.

THE RITZ-CARLTON DOHA


Location:

Situated in the prestigious West Bay Lagoon district, overlooking the crystal blue waters of the Arabian Gulf. Occupying two private Islands, the hotel is perfectly located 15 minutes from the centre of town, 25 minutes from Doha International airport; less than five minutes from the 18-hole championship course of Doha Golf Club, Close to Qatar University and the new road leading to al Khor and Ras Laffan industrial city.

Accommodation:

374 guest rooms including 61 suites and 42 Club Rooms.

Meeting and Banquet Facilities:

Over 21,528 square feet/2000 square meters of meeting, conference and banqueting facilities including the 12,421 square foot/1,154 square meter Al Amiriya Ballroom, 6080 square foot/565 square meter Al Shoyoukh Ballroom, six individual meeting rooms, dedicated teleconferencing room and extensive outdoor function space.

HOTEL INTER-CONTINENTAL DOHA

Location:

Opened in November 2000 and set in landscaped gardens on the beachfront in the West Bay Lagoon area of Doha, close to Aladdin’s Kingdom Family Fun Park, Doha Golf Club, Qatar University, and the Diplomatic Area.  A twenty minute drive from Doha International Airport and 10-15 minutes from the commercial area and city centre. It has easy access to the arterial roads linking Doha with the industrial cities of Mesaieed, Dukhan and Ras Laffan.

Accommodation:

A total of 268 rooms, including 36 suites, all with a sea view; several suites have kitchen facilities. 12 Business Rooms, 12 Executive Suites, 12 Diplomatic Suites, 10 Presidential Suites, 2 Royal Suites. A number of rooms have been designed specifically for guests with special needs. Each room has a private bathroom with a separate bath & shower. Hair dryer; bathrobe; radio; satellite TV and movies; IDD telephones; voicemail; Internet Access via television in all rooms; 24-hour room service. The Club Floor rooms have express check-in/out facilities; a private meeting room; executive lounge with complimentary breakfast, light refreshments. Internet access, and fax/scanner/colour printer/copier machines are available in all Club rooms.

Meeting and Banquet Facilities

Full business facilities include conference and meeting rooms. Al Wajba ballroom can cater for up to 1,000 guests theatre-style and can be sub-divided into three separate soundproofed rooms for smaller functions.

Al Diwan and Al Dana are spacious meeting rooms which can each seat 140 theatre-style or be sub-divided into two separate smaller soundproofed rooms.  The smaller Barzan meeting room, with sea view, seats up to 50 theatre-style.

The well equipped Business Centre has Internet access, photocopying and fax machines, state-of-the-art computers and printers. Twelve rooms have been designed as ‘office-away-from-the-office’ facilities for guests.


DESCRIPTIONS OF THE TOURS

 

DOHA CITY TOUR 

Your visit to Qatar will undoubtedly begin in Doha, the Capital City and home to 80% of the country’s population, most of its commerce and the heart and pulse of its culture. Our guided city tour, in an air-conditioned bus, takes you through the downtown streets, some evocative of days gone by, others reflecting the dramatic and stunning modernization of this fast-growing city. Beginning at the Qatar National Museum, you will enjoy a fascinating glimpse into the history and marine life of this unique country.
Strolling along the sea-front Corniche you will be struck by the expanding and rising urban skyline on the one side, whilst on the other traditional dhows, still used for fishing, trade and leisure, line the quays.

Later, there will be a chance to view a private collection of the region’s oldest weapons-swords, daggers, pistols and cannons – in the Weaponry Museum.
No tour of the city would be complete without a visit to the traditional vegetable and fish markets, the falconry shops and the colorful Old Souq. Here, the exotic small of the coffee beans, spices, ancient herbal remedies and Arabic perfumes fills the air.
Later, we move to the Gold Souq (market), where an array of jewelry in both Arabic and western styles are on offer at very attractive prices.

Finally, by contrast, we end our tour to one of the Middle East’s largest shopping malls, the City Center, where there is a very high standard of international products such as perfumes, cosmetics, clothes, watches, bags etc.

DUNES DISCOVERY TOUR

A comfortable 4-wheel drive vehicle will take you from Doha, south along the coastal route to the Sea line Beach Resort, where you vehicle will be prepared for the exciting journey ahead. Air will be released from the tires to enable them to drive smoothly over the soft sand of the magnificent dunes that lie ahead.
This tour is an ideal photo opportunity, allowing you to capture the stunning panoramic views of spectacular sand dunes and the Inland Sea, whilst enjoying the excitement of a roller-coaster ride. This is truly a chance to enjoy the unspoiled nature of the desert and experience the unique scenery.

CAMEL TRACK & EQUESTRIAN CLUB

Those who long to take a look at the ubiquitous camel in its natural surroundings will not have far to look at Shahaniya, a desert area some 25km from Qatar’s capital city Doha. Here, alongside the purpose-built camel race track, hundreds of camels, their trainers and riders, live and work all year round, giving the tourist an opportunity for a unique insight into this traditional Arabic sport. Experts are on hand to explain all aspects of camel training and racing.
Whilst the camel is perhaps the best-known inhabitant of the desert, there is an other animal, which commands equal respect amongst the Arab people – the horse! A short journey from Shahaniya is the Equestrian Club, where visitors will be welcome to view some of the country’s finest horses.

DESERT SAFARI

This afternoon and evening tour in comfortable 4-wheel vehicle, takes you some 75km across the southern Qatari desert, with over half of this distance off-road. Our highly experienced drivers will take you on an exciting and unforgettable roller-coaster ride over the magnificent sand dunes – some as high as 50 meters! You will venture as far as the famous Inland Sea – an area renowned for its outstanding beauty, where you can relax, Bedouin Style, complete with tent, carpets and cushions and our famous Arabic hospitality. Take a swim in the tranquil Gulf waters or scramble up the sand on foot. Experience the quiet of the desert, far from the rush and noise of city life, with no sound but the breeze and the shifting sand. Or, for the more adventurous, try sand boarding or sand skiing – a cinch for those experienced on snow, and a soft landing for those who are trying it for the first time! As evening approaches, enjoy sunsets as the beat of the drums and rhythmic music of the region echo into the night. Return to your hotel by late evening.

I went on several of the offered tours while attending the Fourth Ministerial Conference of the WTO. My favorites were the Dunes Discovery Tour and tge Desert Safari. I caused quite the stir each time when I put on one of my favorite Batman hoodies when the sun dropped behind the horizon and the temperature dropped with it. The first time I wore a Batman t-shirt I had people coming up to me asking where they could get one like it. I would give then the website url where I bought them. I ended up giving away two Batman t-shirts to a guide on each of the tours as a "gratuity" for all their help. I think they appreciated the Batman t-shirts more than the money they received from other guests. When I returned to the US I ordered the same styles again since those two were favorites. It makes me smile to imagine those two young men, one wearing a Batman the Animated Series t-shirt with the masked man leaping off a red disc against a black t-shirt, his cape flying out behind him, and the other with a Batman Lightning Strikes t-shirt and being the envy of their friends.

QATAR GENERAL INFORMATION


Capital

Doha

Commercial

Doha

Time

GMT+3hrs

Language

Arabic, with English widely spoken

Electricity

240 volts

Int’l Dailing Code

+974

Climate

From June to September the climate is hot with high levels of humidity during the mounths of July and Audust. Temperatures can reach the mid-40’s with no rainfall during these months.
The rest of the year is pleasantly mild and sunny, with occasional ranfall to be expected from December to March.

Tourist Visa

All visitors to Qatar are required to hold a valid visa, except Nationals and Residents of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates. A two-week Tourist Visa can be obtained through any Doha hotel, but must be arranged at least one week in advance of arrival.

Taxi

Taxis are not expensive and readily available. However, for privacy and comfort, the use of a limousine is recommended and can be arranged by contacting you hotel reception.

Currently

Qatar Riyal (QR=100Dirhams)


 

WTODoha.org