QCB Governor H E Sheikh Abdulla bin Saoud Al Thani addressing the 7th Gulf Cooperation Council Regulators’ Summit in Doha yesterday.
BY MOHAMMAD SHOEB
DOHA: Total assets managed by Qatar commercial banks have reached to QR828bn by end of January 2013. The value of the banks assets surged by QR11bn during the month of January 2013, Qatar Central Bank (QCB) Governor H E Sheikh Abdulla bin Saoud Al Thani said here yesterday.
The total assets value of Qatari commercial banks increased by 18 percent to QR817bn in 2012 as compared to previous year. “Customer deposits increased by 26 percent to reach QR458bn in 2012, while credit line facility grew by 27 percent to QR477bn,” the QCB Governor said in his opening speech at the 7th Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Regulators’ Summit.
Sheikh Abdulla, who is also the Chairman of Qatar Financial Centre Regulatory Authority and the Qatar Financial Markets Authority (QFMA), said: “Cooperation amongst GCC regulators is now a crucial need especially as we move forward with addressing loopholes in the GCC financial and business regulatory frameworks.”
He also added that financial system in Qatar has made landmark achievements in the past few years. “We have already established a national credit centre, launched a financial assessment and evaluation institution, and issued a new resolution by the QCB to enhance financial stability.”
The two-day GCC Regulator’s Summit has been organised under the patronage of QCB Governor by Thomson Reuters in association with the QCB, QFC Regulatory Authority and QFMA.
Sheikh Abdulla’s opening speech was followed by an inciting panel discussion on ‘Emergent Regulatory Trends’. The panelists included Michael Rayan (moderator), CEO and Board Member of QFC Regulatory Authority; Ian Jhonston, CEO of Dubai Financial Service Authority; Tajinder Singh, Deputy Secretary General of The International Organisation of Securities Commissions and others.
Jhonston examined the pros and cons of the three main regulatory approaches namely ‘Sector’, ‘Twin Peaks’ and ‘Integrated’ model, and said that “Risks lie in each model as failures have occurred under all of them”.
However, he added that each model can work provided certain loopholes are taken care of effectively. For sector wise regulation “focus on conduct” must be ensured to address “inconsistencies, gaps and lacks” to avoid arbitrage gain, and for the “integrated” approach “cultural differences between prudential and conduct of business” (COB) are important issues. So similar products need consistent regulation, and communication between regulators is critical. And also conduct of business must not be overlooked.
The GCC Regulators’ Summit remains the Middle East’s premier event on the topics of regulation, compliance, risk and governance, providing a perfect platform for regulators and financial professionals to meet and discuss challenges, propose solutions and share best practice in a unique conference experience.
The summit will cover key themes including the US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), harmonised regional regulatory approaches, risk management, anti-money laundering, international sanctions, data security, new international core principles (Basel III, IAIS, IOSCO), GCC securities activities and trends, and many more.
Basil Moftah, Managing Director, Middle East, Africa and Russia /CIS, said: “It is vital we contribute to enhance confidence around transparency, governance and investor protection in the GCC’s financial markets. This is the region’s landmark forum for the financial compliance community.”