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Boatyard industry in doldrums due to political turmoil in Qatar

They are thousands of miles apart across the Arabian Sea, but the political storm brewing in distant Qatar has sunk hopes in the boat manufacturing industry in Beypore, in the Malabar region of North Kerala.

The coastal town has supplied over 10 customized luxury dhows to Qatari royalty during the last six years, but with the recent blockade imposed on that country by its Arab neighbors, the future of the traditional boat building industry appears bleak.

The luxury dhows, commissioned by the Qatar royal family, are currently under construction at a boatyard at Beypore near Calicut. As per current contract, the 100 feet long vessels are to sail to Dubai for interior works by next year before they are taken to their final destination in Doha.

Ever since news came in of the Gulf crisis, the boatyard owners have been in constant touch with his major clients in Qatar. They have also been in touch with Qatari authorities who have commissioned the dhow projects on behalf of the Qatar royal family. Qatari authorities told them not to panic and that the current issues in the Gulf are temporary and would get resolved soon.

The luxury boat manufacturing industry, an ancient industry in North Malabar region had almost become defunct but for the patronage of Qatar royal family who have placed regular orders from the boatyards in the region.


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