Religion in Qatar (2022)[1][2]

  Islam (official) (65.5%)
  Christianity (15.4%)
  Hinduism (14%)
  Buddhism (3%)
  Other religions/Unaffiliated (2%)

Qatar is an Islamic state with multi-religious minorities like most of the Persian Gulf countries with waves of migration over the last 30 years. The official state religion is Sunni Islam. The community is made up of Sunni and Shi’a Muslims, Christians, Hindus, and small groups of Buddhists and Baha’is.[3] Muslims form 65.5% of the Qatari population, followed by Christians at 15.4%, Hindus at 14.2%, Buddhists at 3.3% and the rest 1.9% of the population follow other religions or are unaffiliated. Qatar is also home to numerous other religions mostly from the Middle East and Asia.[4]

The country has also hosted numerous interfaith dialogue conferences.


Main article: Islam in Qatar

The state religion in Qatar is Islam.[5] Most Qataris belong to the Sunni sect of Islam.[6][7][8] Shiites comprise around 10% of Qatar's Muslim population.[9] Religious policy is set by the Ministry of Islamic Affairs and Islamic instruction is compulsory for Muslims in all state-sponsored schools.[5]

The state mosque is the Mohammed Bin Abdul Wahab mosque, which is located in the Lejbailat neighbourhood and was designed by renowned Qatari architect Ibrahim Jaidah, drawing on traditional Qatari architecture.

The Abdulla Bin Zaid Al Mahmoud Islamic Cultural Center is located in the Al Souq neighbourhood of Doha, adjacent to Souq Waqif. The center provides Arabic lessons to beginners and intermediate speakers.

At the tertiary level, Islamic Studies is taught at Qatar University, and at Hamad Bin Khalifa University’s (HBKU) Faculty of Islamic Studies where a master's degree is offered. Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, the consort of the Father Emir and mother of current Emir, is the most notable graduate.[10]

Education City is also home to the Center for Islamic Legislation and Ethics (CILE), a think tank founded in 2012 and headed by Swiss political philosopher Professor Tariq Ramadan of the University of Oxford.[11]

Islam’s role in scientific discovery has also been an area of interest for the Qatar Foundation, and recently, the Society for Muslim Scientists was established with prominent members. In 2010, the joint venture between Bloomsbury Publishing and Qatar Foundation began, which saw them publish the book, ‘Science in Islam’.[12]


Main article: Hinduism in Qatar

Hindus make up 14% of Qatar. There are an estimated 422,118 Hindus in the country.[2] Many Hindus are from South and Southeast Asia.[13][14]


Main article: Christianity in Qatar

The Christian community in Qatar is a diverse mix of European, North and South American, Asian, Middle Eastern and African expatriates. In 2023, they form around 15.1% of the total population, being mainly made up of foreign workers from the Philippines, Europe, and India.[5][2]

No foreign missionary groups operate openly in the country. In May 2005, the Qatari Government leased a piece of property on the outskirts of Doha to the representatives of Christian churches in the country for the construction of Church buildings.[15] A 2015 study estimates some 200 believers in Christ from a Muslim background, though not all of those are necessarily citizens.[16]


In 2020, Buddhism was represented by between 1.8-3.8% of the population of Qatar,[5][17] mainly comprising migrant workers from South-East Asia and East Asia especially from China, South Korea, Japan, and Vietnam.

Freedom of religion

In 2023, the country was scored 2 out of 4 for religious freedom by Freedom House.[18]

See also


  1. ^ "Population By Religion, Gender And Municipality March 2020". Qatar Statistics Authority.
  2. ^ a b c Global Religious Landscape. Pew Forum.
  3. ^ "Qatar". Retrieved 2023-05-25.
  4. ^ "Religious Composition by Country" (PDF). Global Religious Landscape. Pew Forum. Retrieved 9 July 2013.
  5. ^ a b c d US State Dept 2022 report
  6. ^ "Tiny Qatar's growing global clout". BBC. 30 April 2011. Retrieved 12 March 2015.
  7. ^ "Qatar's modern future rubs up against conservative traditions". Reuters. 27 September 2012.
  8. ^ "Rising power Qatar stirs unease among some Mideast neighbors". Reuters. 12 February 2013. Retrieved 13 June 2013.
  9. ^ "Mapping the Global Muslim Population" (PDF). Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life. October 2009. Retrieved 9 August 2017.
  10. ^ "Class of 2015 graduates honoured". Gulf Times. 6 May 2015.
  11. ^ "CILE Center - about us". CILE. 2012.
  12. ^ "Bloomsbury Qatar Foundation publishing and delfina foundation announce winner of Arab writing residency programme". Al Bawaba. 5 March 2015.
  13. ^ "Population structure". Ministry of Development Planning and Statistics. 31 January 2020.
  14. ^ "Population By Religion, Gender And Municipality March 2020". Qatar Statistics Authority.
  15. ^ "International Religious Freedom Report 2006". U.S. Department of State. Retrieved 6 April 2014.
  16. ^ Johnstone, Patrick; Miller, Duane Alexander (2015). "Believers in Christ from a Muslim Background: A Global Census". Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Religion. 11: 17. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  17. ^ The ARDA website, retrieved 2023-08-28
  18. ^ Freedom House website, retrieved 2023-08-08