Forging strategic partnerships between essential stakeholders and major players in the country’s financial technology (fintech) industry would be instrumental in supporting diversification and innovation in Qatar’s financial sector.
Michael Javier, CEO and founder of Doha-based fintech firm CWallet, emphasised the need for technology companies in the country to help meet the objectives of Qatar National Vision 2030 pillars, which include achieving a knowledge-based economy.
“Having a robust fintech landscape in the country will open more avenues for entrepreneurs and opportunities for innovative solutions that would usher in high in-country value,” Javier told Gulf Times Wednesday.
Javier also lauded the Qatar Central Bank’s (QCB) ‘Qatar FinTech Strategy 2023’, which was launched earlier in the presence of QCB Governor HE Sheikh Bandar bin Mohamed bin Saoud al-Thani and other officials and dignitaries.
A Qatar News Agency (QNA) report on the launch ceremony stated that QCB’s vision for financial technology is based on development, diversification, and increasing the competitiveness of Qatar’s fintech and services sector through pioneer infrastructure, and providing solutions that positively affect customer experience.
QNA also reported that Sheikh Bandar said “the strategy is based on a comprehensive study of the financial technology sector globally, as well as the Qatari financial sector’s foundations and the strengths of the national economy, creating a pioneering infrastructure for the financial technology market locally and globally, whilst ensuring the development of a comprehensive system for this sector, starting from the establishment of financial tech companies, all the way to mechanisms to enable them to grow and expand rapidly.”
The QCB also granted a licence to CWallet, said Javier, adding that this will help enable the company to develop and deliver online, mobile, and point-of-sale solutions across Qatar and the region.
He said the QCB licence allows CWallet to offer consumers and merchants more options in terms of mobile money wallets, peer-2-peer transactions, online, offline, and on-demand payment transactions, marketplace, payment gateway, wallet-as-a-service, and prepaid cards.
“In continuation of the efforts to develop and reinforce the financial technology sector (fintech), CWallet Services has been granted a licence to provide digital payment services, bringing the number of companies under QCB’s supervision to eight. #Qatar_Central_Bank #Fintech,” the QCB tweeted.
Earlier, Javier signed an agreement in London with Vesuvio Labs CEO and founder, Kristian Feldborg, who was one of the speakers of the 2023 edition of the Qatar Economic Forum, Powered by Bloomberg. Javier said Vesuvio Labs is a startup incubator and seed fund that aims to support innovation and entrepreneurship in the fintech, insurtech, and wealthtech space.
“I am thrilled and proud to announce that CWallet is joining our portfolio and that Vesuvio Labs will immediately take over the technical strategy and execution. CWallet was recently licenced by Central Bank of Qatar and we look forward to working with them on their extremely ambitious plans,” Feldborg stated in his LinkedIn account.
Javier said, “The overall objective of the partnership with Vesuvio Labs is to bring advance tech, various products, and services using new tech trends and improve the current business ecosystem to serve the local and regional market while making sure it is regulated, sustainable, and in line with Qatar National Vision 2030.”
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