Australian firms to explore opportunities in Qatar: Doha Bank
08 Aug 2017 - 1:55
Several senior business executives in Australia have expressed their keen interest to explore business and investment opportunities in Qatar at an event organised by Doha Bank recently.
Doha Bank hosted an event on August 4 2017 at Shangri- La Hotel, Sydney on the topic “Qatar – A sustainable performer”. The event was well attended by leading Corporates and Bankers in Australia who were keen to hear more about Qatar and to explore further business opportunities with Doha Bank. Hilton Wood, Chief Representative Officer, Doha Bank Australia gave the welcome address.
Dr R Seetharaman, CEO of Doha Bank, in his keynote address, gave insight on Qatar as well as on global economy.
He said: “Qatar economy is expected to grow by 3.4 percent in 2017 and will have a fiscal deficit of 7.7 percent in 2017. The Nominal GDP of close to 30 percent comes from Mining and Quarrying (mainly hydrocarbon) and remaining from Non-hydrocarbon sectors.Net foreign currency liability of all banks (QR120bn) in Qatar is more than 135 percent of QCB reserves. QCB reserves are more than 6 times of volatile non-resident deposit outflow (QR14bn) during Jun 2017. Qatar has a reserve of $340bn including assets of its Sovereign Wealth Fund. Qatar’s reserves are more than 200 percent of its GDP… With improving liquidity, interbank rates are coming down. Rebound in Qatar Stock Exchange index and Qatar sovereign bond prices reflect improving market confidence in Qatari Economy.”
DR Seetharaman highlighted on key reforms in Qatar. He said: “Qatar ranked 18th in ‘the Global Competitiveness Report 2016-17’ and stands second in the region. A new law for Public Private Partnership (PPP) businesses in Qatar should provide an additional level of comfort to the private sector and foreign investors. In Feb 2017, Qatar issued a new law on arbitration (the “Arbitration Law”), inspired by the UNCITRAL Model Law (the “Model Law”), an international template for law on arbitration.”
He noted that Qatar–Australia bilateral relationships. He said: “Qatar–Australia bilateral trade exceeded A$1.6bn in 2016. There are growing relationships between both countries in aviation, education, trade and defence. The major Australian export to Qatar was livestocks. Australian company Leighton was instrumental in constructing the equestrian complex in Qatar. Qatar plans to airlift 4000 cows. It would take as many as 60 flights to deliver the cattle, which were bought in Australia and the US.”
Hassad Australia, a subsidiary of Hassad Foods, a company owned by the Qatar government, had owned land spread across Australia.