Some 4.47mn cheques worth QR272.56bn were processed in Qatar in 2018, QCB data show.
The usage of cheques as an instrument for conducting transactions got reduced as high value transactions also are being conducted through the electronic medium, the Qatar Central Bank said in its 10th Financial Stability review.
According to the QCB, the payment systems in Qatar continued to witness a shift from paper-based to electronic payment instruments.
As the world moves towards innovative payment products with the adoption of latest technologies, central banks across the globe have started studying the evolving landscape in its endeavour to be at the forefront of the value chain, it noted.
Even though the number of cheques in the low denomination (below QR250,000) category comprised 96.9% of total cheques processed, in value terms, it accounted for only 32.4% of the total value.
On the other hand, cheques with value above QR1mn comprised 48.6% of total cheques, although their volume was only 0.7% of the total number of cheques processed.
Cheques processed with the highest value (above QR10mn) fell from 20.9% in 2017 to 17.7% in 2018.
Qatar’s real-time gross settlement system (RTGS) processed on an average 2,196 SWIFT transactions and 18,001 high value (above QR250,000) cheque transactions on a daily basis during 2018, QCB data showed.
Although a significant fall in daily average value of SWIFT transactions was registered in 2018, the daily average number of transactions observed a growth of 34% last year, QCB said.
On the other hand, preference towards electronic transactions resulted in decline of both the number and value of cheque transactions in 2018, which fell (compared to the previous year) by 1.7% and 8.7%, respectively.
The increase in both volume and value of electronic transactions on year-on-year (y-o-y) basis indicates that a preference towards transacting via electronic medium took place over transacting through cheques during the year, QCB noted.
The value of individual cheque per transaction continue to fell as value of cheques transactions fell by a higher quantum than the number of cheques transactions.
An analysis of the month-wise volume and value of high value transactions (more than QR250,000) through cheques indicates that transactions remained active across the months, reflective of robust market activities except during the month of Holy Ramadan and subsequent summer vacation.
The electronic cheque clearing (ECC) system processes cheques above QR250,000 on a real-time basis, whereas cheques below QR250,000 are processed in a batch on net basis by the end of the clearing day.
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