A strong US dollar and the run-up to Eid al-Adha have pushed growth in remittance outflow from Qatar, according to foreign exchange traders in Doha.
Some money managers said since the previous days exchange houses have been flooded with customers who are making the most of higher currency rates. Similarly, they are also anticipating a surge in transactions in the coming Eid holiday.
“We have already experienced an increase in footfall from customers in the past few days. Since yesterday, remittance volume has increased by almost 10% to 15%...the fall in the Indian rupee had also contributed to the increase in the number of transactions, and we are expecting more to come in the coming days,” one manager said. 
Month-on-month there was an almost 15% to 20% increase in remittance volume this August, he noted.
Asked about remittance growth in the first six months of the year, the manager said remittance volume for the first half of 2018 “was less than 50%” compared to H1 2017, which, according to him, was “very good because the economic blockade started only on June 5.” 
“But when compared to the second half of last year, remittance volume has increased in H1 2018 and even the numbers are better now,” the manager pointed out.
Exchange houses in the country recorded a slight slowdown in remittance volume in the second half of 2017 because of the economic blockade but support from the Qatar Central Bank provided stability amid liquidity issues at the time.
But for higher value remittances, the manager said many customers prefer to go to the banks because of the QR55,000 limit per person per week, which has been in effect since last year, the manager added.

Doha Bank offers ‘Green Car Loan’

Doha Bank has announced a special ‘Green Car Loan’ offer to encourage residents to opt for environmentally-friendly vehicles as part another effort to support the sustainability objectives of the Qatar Vision 2030.
The offer features discounts on interest rate on car loan for electric or hybrid vehicles to encourage customers to become more energy efficient and sustainable. The ‘Green Car Loan’ is available for select new and pre-owned electric and hybrid car models.
Doha Bank’s ‘Green Car Loan’ allows customers to take advantage of special features, including a flat interest rate starting at 1.99% per annum (reducing rate of 3.75% pa), complimentary comprehensive car insurance for the first year, complimentary 24/7 roadside assistance from Doha Bank Assurance Company, and a pre-approved instant personal loan among other benefits. 
Doha Bank CEO Dr R Seetharaman said: “At Doha Bank, we are firmly committed to playing a leading role in supporting environmental sustainability and helping transform our nation into a green, low-carbon economy. 
“Our ‘Go Green’ initiatives are aimed at helping build a greener future for all, and our ‘Green Car Loan’ offer is another step in that direction that makes it rewarding for Qatari residents to opt for eco-friendly vehicles. We encourage the Qatar community to join us in our mission to protect the environment and lead the drive towards our country’s sustainable future.” 
As an active environmental advocate, Doha Bank has a long history of organising and supporting green initiatives as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) efforts, the bank said. 
Throughout the year, Doha Bank hosts a series of annual events aimed at promoting environmental action and responsibility, including the ‘Al Dana Green Run’, one of Qatar’s largest community events, the ‘Beach Clean-up’ campaign, as well as a tree planting activity. 
In addition, the bank’s ‘ECO-Schools Programme’ is designed to encourage and support schools to proactively participate in the implementation of good environmental practices, reduction of carbon footprint, and increased eco-consciousness. 
For more information on the eligibility criteria for Doha Bank’s ‘Green Car Loan’ and terms and conditions, call 4445 6000 or visit any Doha Bank Branch or log-on to www.dohabank.com.qa.