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Sunday, January 18, 2009

Qatar Cornershops: The End?

In what will mean disaster for small scale merchants and residents alike small shops in residential areas of Qatar could cease to exist from March onwards.

According to the Gulf Times today the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Urban Planning has decided not to renew the licence of convenience and corner stores in residential areas of Qatar.

These little shops are incredibly convenient, and often offer services beyond what people expect in the West - delivering goods after a phone call as well as the ubiquitous newspaper delivered to the door before work.

Hard pressed mothers everywhere will rue the decision - no longer will a bout of diarhea leading to the using up of the last nappy be solved by a quick call to the latest shop. Future purchases will mean a trip to the malls.

The malls, obviously, will benefit: but not the customers. The shopping centers are already overcrowded, and supermarkets do not follow the British policy of opening a new till whenever a till has more than three customers.

Parking is already a nightmare - for those of us who have cars. For those who do not have cars the situation is even worse.

With the current shortage of taxis, and with most women refusing to take a bus, for many fetching the daily bread will become a daily nightmare.

Also see: Qatar Shopping

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