Qatar has distinguished itself from other markets by offering investors “a good number of opportunities” in the lead up to the 2022 FIFA World Cup, and in the long term, the Qatar Exchange Traded Funds (QETF), which is “a bigger opportunity,” according to Doha Bank CEO Dr R Seetharaman.
Seetharaman made the statement during one of Doha Bank’s ongoing webinar series titled "With the Rise of Passive Investing – Let the QETF be your Qatar Investment Solution" held recently.
Seetharaman, who hosted the webinar, highlighted Covid-19-related challenges faced by the global economy, as well as key developments in Qatar, which includes its airport, investment programmes, SME sector development, food security, investment law, new property law, and PPP law.’
“Global ETFs have witnessed demand as investors prefer passive investment strategies,” Seetharaman said, adding that “the country is poised to continue on a trajectory not seen by other emerging markets.”
Guest panelist Dr Valerio Schmitz-Esser, managing director and head of Index Solutions for Credit Suisse Asset Management, said the group currently manages $151bn in index funds.
“Our success has been derived by being able to design our index funds and ETFs to minimise the total cost of ownership for our investors. The objective is simple, replicate risk-return characteristics of the benchmark as accurately as possible,” he said.
Talal Samhouri, senior portfolio manager of Aventicum Capital Management Qatar, highlighted that the QETF is benchmarked to the QSE index: “So, for the investor that is not sure how to invest or what company to trade in the local market, it’s perfect for the long-term investors to buy and hold the QETF, and reinvest their dividends.”
Nick Ogbourne, manager of Product Development at the Qatar Stock Exchange, moderated the "Sales & Trading Q&A" portion of the webinar, where it was explained how to trade the QETF and which different strategies to employ.
Seetharaman said, “The QETF trades like all other listings, in that the investor requires an investor number from the Qatar Central Securities Depository and opening of an account with a licensed local broker. Once the investor has access, they can trade the QETF.”
Fahmi Alghussein, CEO of Aventicum Capital Management Qatar, said, “Institutions, corporates, and individuals can transact directly with the QETF by approaching the founder, Doha Bank. Once approved as an authorised participant, the investor can create and redeem units with the fund, making this an attractive feature of the fund.”
Samhouri also noted that like the other listings, the fund pays out a dividend annually and this year was the first listing in the history of the Qatar Stock Exchange to distribute their annual dividend over multiple installments, much like international and other regional markets.