In recent weeks, the Gulf country has seen an increase in daily COVID-19 instances. The Ministry of Public Health in Qatar has reported a spike in COVID-19 cases as compared to last month, as the relaxation of some regulations has resulted in more relaxed attitudes toward the epidemic. 

This has caused widespread fear in society about whether the nation may face another wave of COVID-19 cases just months before the FIFA World Cup tournaments. Despite an increase in COVID-19 case numbers, there have been no confirmed deaths in recent weeks due to the virus, and the number of people admitted to hospitals because of the disease remains low.

Last month, health officials lowered COVID-19 rules even further by removing the mask mandate in most places, even indoors. Officials have also withdrawn a mandate that unvaccinated employees in the business and government spheres undergo weekly Rapid Antigen tests, effectively ending what many have described as a ‘rigorous’ procedure.

This is part of a larger strategy to triple the influx of visitors to Qatar, raise the travel and tourism industry’s contribution to GDP by 12% by the year 2030, and establish 50 new hotels by the end of 2022, according to sources, and the rate is going as expected. As a result of the current policies, the country saw a nearly seven-fold rise in tourists during the first quarter of 2022.

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