Qatar, Doha - Monday, April 30th 2012 [ME NewsWire]
His Excellency Sheikh Abdullah Bin Saoud Al Thani, Governor of Qatar Central Bank and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Shard Funding Limited, announced that the inauguration of Shard Tower in London will be on July 5th 2012. The tower will be inaugurated by His Excellency Sheikh Hamad Bin Jassim Bin Jabor Al Thani, Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the State of Qatar and Prince Andrew Albert Edward, the Duke of York.
The announcement of the inauguration of the tower came during a recent Qatari delegation visit to London, headed by His Excellency Sheikh Abdullah Bin Saoud Al Thani to inspect the tower’s latest developments and completion details. The Shard, in which the State of Qatar is a majority investor (95%), is considered the centrepiece of London’s historic London Bridge Quarter.
The delegation also included Mr. Ali Shareef Al Emadi, QNB Group Chief Executive Officer and Board Member of the Shard Funding Limited.
During the visit, His Excellency inspected the tower. He was also given a detailed brief on the last stages of the construction process, the security and safety measures, and the multi-use features of the tower, including prime residential apartments, high quality offices, signature restaurants and the 5-star Shangri-La hotel.
Towering over the South Bank of the Thames, The Shard is the tallest building in Western Europe at 310m (1,016 ft) and will consist of the capital's highest public viewing gallery offering 360° views of the City of London.
On this occasion, His Excellency Sheikh Abdullah Bin Saoud Al Thani stated that the inauguration date is quite significant as it coincides with the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations and is just a few weeks prior to the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics that will be held in London during this summer.
He also added: "In addition to punctuating the skyline, The Shard, which appears over London Bridge Station, will be the highly visible face of London's newest commercial quarter for the millions of people who pass through the transport hub".
His Excellency said that The Shard is an enduring symbol of the close ties between Qatar and the United Kingdom and joins a broad investment portfolio that highlights the synergy between our countries, pointing out that the relatively fast completion of this project is a significant milestone.
He also stated that the external investments embody the Qatar 2030 vision; a roadmap to achieve a diversified income that is independent from oil and gas revenues. Therefore, from an investment perspective, this landmark is the path towards realizing our objective.
Mr. Ali Shareef Al Emadi, QNB Group Chief Executive Officer and Board Member of the Shard Funding Limited, who was also part of the delegation, said: “This towering endeavor embodies our vision to create an alternative investment to oil. And today, I'm proud to say that we are at the final stages of inaugurating The Shard, London's newest iconic landmark.
He also said that it is important for the State of Qatar as it represents a major investment in an eclectic and vibrant city and region that presents excellent opportunities for people and businesses on the South Bank.
Irvine Sellar, Chairman, Sellar Property Group, the London Bridge Quarter developer commented, “I am delighted that the State of Qatar shared our vision, and with their backing this landmark project for London has now become a reality.”