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By ICV Certifiers

Qatar’s ICV Certification Program: Benefits and Challenges for Businesses

In Qatar, the In-Country Value (ICV) Certification program stands as a central pillar in the nation’s push to diversify its economy and promote local development. This program, which assesses and rewards the contributions of businesses to Qatar’s economic growth, presents both significant benefits and challenges to enterprises operating within its framework.

Benefits for Businesses

  • Competitive Advantage: ICV Certification provides a competitive edge for businesses, particularly in government contracts and projects. The government places a premium on working with certified entities, which can be a game-changer when it comes to winning bids and securing projects.

  • Enhanced Reputation: Achieving ICV Certification showcases a business’s commitment to the economic development and social well-being of Qatar. It is important to know how to apply for ICV certificates. This not only improves its standing with government entities but also boosts its reputation within the local and international business communities.

  • Access to Financing: Certified companies may enjoy preferential financing options from government institutions and banks, making it easier for them to invest in growth and expansion.

  • Government Support: Businesses holding ICV Certification often benefit from guidance and support from government entities. This can range from assistance in navigating regulatory requirements to access to various incentives and support programs.

  • Local Procurement Opportunities: By emphasizing local procurement, ICV Certification bolsters local industries. This opens up new opportunities for businesses to source goods and services locally, which can lead to cost savings and streamlined supply chains.

  • Workforce Development: ICV Certification encourages businesses to invest in the training and development of Qatari nationals, leading to a more skilled, empowered, and diverse workforce.

  • Stimulating SME Growth: The program underscores the importance of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by encouraging their involvement in the supply chains of larger companies. This support leads to SME growth and fosters entrepreneurship within Qatar.

Challenges for Businesses

  • Complex Certification Process: Meeting ICV Certification requirements can be a complex and resource-intensive process. Businesses often need to invest in systems, processes, and strategies to comply with the program’s criteria.

  • Resource Allocation: The allocation of resources, including financial investments and staff training, can be a challenge, particularly for smaller businesses. Meeting ICV requirements might necessitate a significant shift in business operations.

  • Competition: As more companies seek ICV Certification, the competition for local procurement and government contracts can become intense. Businesses need to continually find ways to distinguish themselves in a crowded field.

  • Changing Regulations: Qatar’s regulatory environment is evolving, and businesses must stay abreast of changes to ensure they maintain their certification status.

  • Integration of Qatari Workforce: While investing in the development of the local workforce is a key goal of ICV Certification, businesses might face challenges in integrating Qatari employees effectively, including language and cultural differences.

  • Supply Chain Adaptation: Adapting supply chains to focus on local procurement can be challenging, particularly if companies have established relationships with international suppliers.


Qatar’s ICV Certification program presents both opportunities and obstacles for businesses. While it offers a clear competitive advantage, enhances reputation, and opens doors to financing and support, businesses must also navigate a complex certification process, resource allocation, and evolving regulations. The program’s emphasis on local procurement, workforce development, and SME growth is crucial for Qatar’s economic diversification and sustainable growth. By understanding and strategically addressing the associated benefits and challenges, businesses can leverage ICV Certification to contribute to Qatar’s vision of economic prosperity and diversification.

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  • November 1, 2023

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