Investor confidence in Qatar remains underpinned by financial assets of over $300bn held in a sovereign wealth fund and demonstrated in the country’s ability to raise money on the international bond markets at relatively low yields, the World bank has said in a report.
Zafer Sonmez, who was head of Turkey and Africa for Malaysia's sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd, was named as the fund's general manager.
Qatar’s banking system needs no further support from the central bank and sovereign wealth fund as the decline in non-resident liabilities of lenders have subsided, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Qatar has built strong resilience as it opens up new trade lines and the sovereign wealth fund - one of the world’s largest – seeks new investments abroad, HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani has said.
Qatar, blockaded by three of its Gulf neighbours since June, is capable of supporting its banks with assets in the country’s vast sovereign wealth fund and foreign currency reserves, the central bank governor said.
Qatar Investment Authority chief executive HE Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohamed bin Saud al-Thani said "we are still open for business and business as usual".
Pressure on Qatar's state finances is easing because of higher oil prices and the government may not need to issue an international bond this year, but it is still seeking ways to save money, HE the Finance Minister Ali Sherif al-Emadi said.
Qatar's sovereign wealth fund, Qatar Investment Authority, has bought an almost 10% stake in the company that owns New York's iconic Empire State Building, the official Qatar News Agency reported on Wednesday.
Qatar, whose budget will turn back to surplus in 2017, will remain in one of the strongest fiscal positions in the world over the next decade and continue to hold massive financial buffers through its sovereign wealth fund, according to BMI.
Qatar's public foreign assets are more than 200% of gross domestic product (GDP) this year, which is higher than the Gulf average of 159%.