Qatar

LCRs of Islamic lenders in Qatar comparable to conventional peers

Qatari Islamic banks’ short-term high quality liquidity assets to cover monthly net cash outflow is comparable to those of their conventional peers and their funding pressures are to some extent mitigated by frequent bonds and sukuks issuance by the government, according to Moody’s, a global credit rating agency.

“In Qatar, the LCRs (liquidity coverage ratios) of Islamic banks are comparable to those of their conventional peers. This situation reflects the absence of sizable retail deposit franchises among the Qatari banks, coupled with heightened systemic liquidity pressures that had led to banks relying more heavily on market funding,” Moody’s said in a report. The funding pressures are mitigated somewhat by the frequent issuance of bonds and sukuk by the Qatari sovereign, a situation, which provides local Islamic banks with the same good access to HQLAs (high quality liquid assets) as their conventional peers, it said.
The rating agency found that five of the six GCC countries are Basel III compliant and have introduced LCRs, namely Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain and Oman; only the UAE has yet to adopt a LCR framework for its banks.

Moody’s upgrades #ratings of Masraf Al Rayan

Moody’s has upgraded Masraf Al Rayan’s long term issuer ratings to A1 from A2. Counterparty Risk Assessment is changed to Aa3 from A1. The outlook on the long-term ratings has changed to stable from positive. The upgrade of Masraf Al Rayan’s ratings reflects continued business diversification as a result of growth and profitability of the UK subsidiary. Moody's expects these diversification trends to continue as the bank’s UK subsidiary grows further. The rating agency also expects that Masraf Al Rayan will maintain strong capital ratios, as healthy internal capital generation supports the needs of future asset growth.

Qinvest hikes revenues to $65.7 million in H1

#Qatar’s QInvest said that its revenues rose to $65.7 million and net profits increased to 25.3 million (QR92.1 million), compared to $24.4 million (QR88.7 million) in H1 2015. The main drivers behind the results include exits in the firm’s investments, strong performance in its international real estate portfolio and increased fee revenue. CEO of QInvest Tamim Hamad Al-Kawari said the company recorded a satisfactory half-year performance across all business lines in the face of economic uncertainties. QInvest is reviewing and stress-testing its portfolio to match the heightened volatility levels and headwinds of the markets.

QIB offers online travel #takaful plan to customers

Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB) has introduced online instant purchase for its new Travel Takaful plan. From now on, QIB’s customers can conveniently purchase Travel Takaful plan through the Bank’s website www.qib.com. The comprehensive plans are offered by Damaan Islamic Insurance Company (Beema) and provide a wealth of coverages. Benefits include compensation in case of lost/delayed baggage, delay in departures, or in the event of lost passports, National IDs and driving licences.
A key benefit is the coverage of medical expenses incurred abroad, including hospital and surgical costs, dental emergencies and other needs that can occur when traveling.

QR1bn #sukuk supports QIIB’s 'interim and strategic' plans

QIIB announced the issuance of a QR1bn sukuk within the first tranche of the bank’s capital boost through a local issue. The new sukuk issuance supports the bank's equity and meets Basel 3 requirements and enhances its plans for expansion. With the new issue the bank’s capital adequacy will increase to about 20%, well above the Qatar Central Bank requirements set at 12.5%. Moody’s has affirmed the Bank’s rating this year at A2, Fitch Ratings at A+ and Capital Intelligence at A- with a positive outlook.

QIIB completes issuance of QR1bn #Sukuk

QIIB announced the issuance of QR1bn Sukuk. The Sukuk aims at boosting the Bank's Tier 1 Capital to maintain a higher Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) complying with the Basel III norms. Last year QIIB shareholders had approved the Bank's proposal to raise up to QR3bn through Sukuk issuance.
A higher capital adequacy will not only help the Bank's risks absorption capacity but also expected to promote financial stability and efficiency of the Shairah compliant banking services provider.

Chelsea Barracks: #Tax consequences of Islamic Finance product heard by the Court of Appeal

In 2008 the #Qatar owned Project Blue entered into an arrangement to acquire the former Chelsea Barracks in West London from the Ministry of Defence for £959 million. Monies were advanced by Masraf al Rayan Bank using an ijara arrangement for the transaction. Now the Court of Appeal has found that the Revenue and Customs authority should have sought Stamp Duty Land Tax from the bank rather than the purchaser, but was apparently out of time to raise such an assessment. Eventually, the machinery in the Finance Act 2003 was not up to the task of ensuring an ijara was treated for tax purposes in the same way as any other transaction. As the adoption of Islamic Finance instruments increases, British tribunals, courts and regulators will need to understand the structures more clearly.

#QIB forges ‘strategic partnership’ with Jaidah Equipment

Qatar Islamic Bank has announced that it will be the preferred financing partner of Jaidah Equipment under the terms of the strategic partnership QIB forged with the Qatar-based equipment dealer.
QIB general manager of Wholesale Banking, Tarek Fawzi, and Jaidah Equipment managing director, Ayman Ahmed, led the official signing before senior executives from both organisations at QIB’s corporate headquarters in Doha.
As part of the agreement, customers of Jaidah Equipment who would like to purchase new equipment are entitled to use the bank’s Fleet and Heavy Equipment Financing scheme, which was introduced last year as part of QIB’s Aamaly programme, a collection of products and services designed specifically for small and medium-sized enterprises.
Through its Aamaly programme, QIB aims to foster the growth of SMEs and help diversify the country’s economy in line with Qatar National Vision 2030.
“We are pleased to be partnering with Jaidah Equipment. This new relationship enhances the value of QIB’s Aamaly programme and makes it easier for SMEs to expand their businesses in the growing Qatar market,” Fawzi said.

Ramadan #Sukuk deal flow as tightest spread for a year issued by #Qatari Bank’s $750m print

A Riyal denominated Sukuk has been issued by the Saudi International Petrochemical Company. The company announced the successful completion of the issuance amounting to SAR 1.0 bn on June 16, 2016. The Sukuk was priced at 235 bps over six months SAIBOR for tenor of five years maturing on June 16, 2021. Riyadh Capital and NCB Capital helped to arrange the private issuance.
In the hard currency space, the Commercial Bank of Qatar issued a Eurobond which achieved the tightest spread for a MENA financial institution this year, conventional or Sukuk.
Whilst the issuance was not a Sukuk, demand for bond indicates strong investor appetite, a good sign of market demand which is likely to be tested with several large planned issuances post Ramadan. Most eagerly anticipated is a potential sovereign issuance by Saudi Arabia, as well as by Aramco, the Saudi national oil giant.

Qatar’s ‘Best Bank’ leads #Islamic #finance sector - Interview

The country’s leading Sharia-compliant lender, Qatar Islamic Bank now controls more than 43.5% of the Islamic banking market share in Qatar and 11.5% of the overall market. The quality of its customer service, portfolio of products and services, solid financial performance and measured approach to growth have also contributed to it recently adding the ‘Best Bank in Qatar’ honor from Euromoney to its list of awards. Group CEO Bassel Gamal explains QIB’s winning formula, its dedicated support for SMEs, and the opportunities Islamic finance holds for clients and investors.
What are the main opportunities in Islamic finance in Qatar?
Islamic finance has recorded many significant achievements over the last few years as it continued to strengthen its capabilities and grow by providing the products and services, as well as the capacity, to structure and finance major infrastructure projects in Qatar, in line with the country’s National Vision 2030.

QFB developing new open architecture platform for #privatebanking clients

#Qatar First Bank (QFB) is developing a pioneering private banking platform, which offers clients the opportunity to select from a wide range of financial solutions. According to CEO Ziad Makkawi the bank is transforming from being an investment focused to an investor-focused entity. QFB’s Head of Private Banking and Wealth Management, Nizar Ahmadi, said the open architecture platform will be available exclusively to private banking clients. QFB's Shariah-compliant products include financing, private banking services, innovative investment solutions, as well as family office services covering trusts, foundations, advisory, real estate planning, and statement consolidation.

Ezdan’s $500m debut #Sukuk a huge hit

Ezdan Holding Group has priced its inaugural Sukuk transaction in the debt capital markets with a $500m 5-year Sukuk issue. The transaction attracted an order-book up to $837m, with 71 investors participating. Investors from the Middle East took 68% of the issuance, with European investors subscribing for 21% and Asian investors taking 11%. Group CEO Ali Mohammed Al Obaidli said the investors’ strong interest resulted in the order book reaching to $837 mn, around 1.67 times of the offer amount.

Al-Khaleej #Takaful boosts stake in #Qatari Unified Bureau Insurance

The Board of Directors of Al-Khaleej Takaful Group has agreed to increase the company's stake in Qatari Unified Bureau Insurance to 25 % from 20 % at a cost of QAR 6.75 mn. Al-Khaleej Takaful Group reported net profit of QAR 43.38 mn for the year to end-December 2015, down from QAR 74.4 mn a year earlier. Qatari Unified Bureau Insurance is a limited liability company which provides insurance on vehicles entering the country and sells insurance cards for vehicles travelling outside the country.

#Qatar's Ezdan Holding prices $500 mln debut five-yr #sukuk - leads

Qatar's Ezdan Holding has priced a $500 mn five-year sukuk issue. The wakala-structured transaction carries a profit rate of 4.375 percent, equivalent to a spread over midswaps of 333 basis points. The reoffer price was 99.446 percent. Barwa Bank, Emirates NBD Capital, HSBC and Mashreq arranged the transaction and were joined by Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank before its close.

New insurance rules bode well for #Qatar

Sheikh Abdullah bin Saud Al Thani, the governor of the Qatar Central Bank (QCB), issued operating instructions and governance principals for insurers operating in Qatar. The instructions relate to licensing, regulations and controls, risk management, accounting and actuaries reports. The new law stipulates that listed insurance companies must have capital greater than QAR100 mn or their risk-based capital requirement, while unlisted insurance companies must have capital higher than the figure set by the QCB.

#Qatar National Bank claims customer data released by hackers is authentic

Qatar National Bank has admitted that its systems were hacked but said the incident will not have a financial impact on the bank’s customers. Security researcher Omar Benbouazza said a Turkish far-right group called Bozkurtlar for Grey Wolves has claimed responsibility for the bank breach. He stated that the attackers used an SQL injection tool and the bank made a big mistake using known vulnerable software in the targeted host.

Indonesia eyeing Qatar expertise for expanding Islamic banking sector

Indonesia seeks to expand Islamic banking and has sought Qatar’s help in developing Shariah-compliant banking in the South East Asian country. Indonesian ambassador Muhammad Basri Sidehabi recently visited QIIB headquarters where they held talks with the bank CEO Abdulbasit Ahmed al-Shaibei. Ambassador Sidehabi said the delegation’s visit to QIIB was aimed at benefiting from Qatar’s Islamic banking experience and further expanding the areas of cooperation. He spoke about the great efforts being made by the authorities in Indonesia, where there is a huge demand for Shariah-based banking services.

Qatar's banks relatively resilient; outlook positive: KPMG

The regional banking sector has entered a new paradigm with margin compression, tightening liquidity, moderate asset and profit growth, limited capital market activity, greater focus on cost reduction and a widespread need for greater capital and funding. KPMG, which analysed the results of 56 leading listed commercial banks in the GCC, noted Qatar's listed banks remain relatively resilient and their long-term outlook remains positive. Omar Mahmood, Head of Financial Services for KPMG said Qatar experienced the second highest growth rate in the region thanks to an increase in corporate lending as a result of the infrastructure boom.

Fitch Affirms Seven Qatari Banks at 'A+'; QNB at 'AA-'

Fitch Ratings has affirmed Qatar National Bank's Long-Term Issuer Default Ratings (IDR) at 'AA-'. The agency has also affirmed the IDRs of The Commercial Bank, Doha Bank, Qatar Islamic Bank, Al Khalij Commercial Bank, Qatar International Islamic Bank and Ahli Bank and International Bank of Qatar at 'A+'. The Outlooks on all the Long-Term IDRs are Stable. Fitch has also upgraded International Bank of Qatar's Viability Rating, which is driven by its growth strategy, focusing almost exclusively on Qatar.

'Greater Paris' woos Qatari investors

Paris is wooing potential Qatari investors to be the part of a huge infrastructure development project, 'Greater Paris', to which the government of France has already committed €50bn. Chiara Corazzara, Managing Director of the Greater Paris Investment Agency said the state-sponsored investment in infrastructures is designed to trigger €80bn private investment and the response that they get from Qatari investors is really encouraging.

Syndicate content