Meet Hamad Bin Khalifa who Made Qatar the Richest Country of the World
Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani is a member of Qatar’s ruling Al Thani royal family. He was the country’s ruling emir from 1995 to 2013, when he stepped down the throne and gave Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani control of Qatar. He is known as the Father Emir by the Qatari administration. With an average annual income of US$86,440, Qatar became the richest country in the world during his 18-year rule as the country’s natural gas production increased to 77 million tonnes.
The 2006 Asian Games, the 2012 UN Climate Change Conference, the Doha Agreement, and the Fatah-Hamas Doha Agreement were all hosted in Qatar during his rule, and it was also decided that the 2022 FIFA World Cup would be held there.
In 1952, Hamad was born. His mother passed away shortly after his birth, and his uncle brought him up. Shaykh Hamad completed his primary and secondary education in Doha before enrolling at the British Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, where he underwent a nine-month training course. After completing his studies at the British Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst, he was appointed a lieutenant colonel. He quickly rose to lead a mobile unit that later adopted the name “Hamad Brigade.” He was made the major general and commander-in-chief of Qatar’s armed forces in a short period of time after becoming an army chief of staff and a general in 1972.
In 1977, he was appointed defence minister and given the title of Heir Apparent of Qatar, a position he retained until 1995. In the 1980s, he oversaw the Supreme Planning Council and contributed to establishing Qatar’s social and economic policies. He made a substantial contribution to the day-to-day management of the nation beginning in 1992 and also worked to develop Qatar’s oil and gas resources. He organised a coup on June 27, 1995, to overthrow his father and take over the government, but it wasn’t until June 20, 2000 that he received the title of Emir of Qatar.
In 1995, while his father was away on vacation in Geneva, Switzerland, Hamad seized power with the help of his family. Hamad bin Khalifa overthrew his father Khalifa bin Hamad Al Thani in a bloodless coup d’état. The deposition followed a disagreement between Hamad bin Khalifa and his father, who had attempted to recover some of the power he had given to Hamad in the early part of 1995. His father lived in exile in France and Abu Dhabi until 2004.
Sports: Hamad has actively promoted and developed athletics in Qatar. He is a skilled diver and a sportsman. His activism has improved the nation’s participation and performance in a number of international contests, including winning an Olympic medal in track and field; hosting a wide variety of international sporting events, such as the 15th Asian Games, GCC, Asian, and World Youth soccer championships; and founding the Qatar Open Tennis Championship, which has developed into one of two top tennis tournaments in the Middle East.
Press Empowerment: In order to provide the press more freedom and, generally, to allow people to voice their thoughts, H.H. Sheikh Hamad abolished local press control in October 1995. The Ministry of Information was similarly abolished in 1998. In 1996, Al Jazeera TV Channel was launched. By Emiri order, the Qatari government contributed to the Al Jazeera news network’s funding during his tenure.
Richest Country of the World: Hamad was free to concentrate on transforming Qatar from a tiny desert backwater into a significant world power by continuing to utilise the nation’s massive oil deposits and finding and using the third largest gas reserves in the world. The production of liquefied natural gas surpassed 77 million tonnes in 2010, making Qatar the richest nation in the world. With fewer than two million residents, the nation’s average annual income per person rose to an astounding $86,440.
Foreign Company Acquisition: Numerous foreign companies have been acquired by the Qatar Investment Authority and its partners, including the renowned department store Harrods in London, the French department store Printemps, the French football team Paris Saint-Germain F.C., a former 10% stake in Porsche, a 12.6% stake in Barclays, and numerous other significant businesses, from businessman Mohammed Al-Fayed.
The Largest Landowner in London: The tallest structure in the United Kingdom, The Shard, the London Olympic Village, and the InterContinental London Park Lane hotel all belong to Qatar. With all this, Qatar has become the largest landowner in London.
Hamad made a public speech on television on June 25, 2013, to transfer power to his son Tamim. Hamad stated in reference to the change in leadership: “The moment has come to open a new page in the path of our nation that would have a new generation assume the responsibilities.”
He has been referred to as the Father Emir in the public eye since he abdicated. The eighth and current Emir of Qatar is his fourth child with his second wife, SheikhaMoza.
Sheikh Hamad is married to three women. He is the father of twenty-four children, eleven sons, and thirteen daughters. Hamad’s first wife is Sheikha Mariam bint Muhammad Al Thani, his first cousin and the offspring of his paternal uncle, Sheikh Muhammad bin Hamad bin Abdullah Al Thani. They bore six daughters and two sons.
Hamad’s second wife is SheikhaMoza bint Nasser Al-Missned, the daughter of Nasser bin Abdullah Al-Missned. He has two daughters and five sons from her. Sheikha Noora bint Khalid Al Thani, another first cousin of Hamad and the niece of the interior minister Sheikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Thani, is the third wife of Hamad. They have five daughters and four sons.
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