DOHA: Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB) has once again been named the ‘Best Islamic Bank in Qatar’ by World Finance, a UK-based bi-monthly financial magazine.
The magazine has also recognised the Shariah-compliant lender as the ‘Best SME Islamic Finance Provider’ for its extraordinary performance after the first year of the launch of ‘Aamaly’, an SME-dedicated programme of QIB.
In a press statement yesterday the bank said that it has achieved considerable growth in SME financing operations during the past year, growing by an impressive 170 percent.
Bassel Gamal, QIB’s Group CEO, said: “The growth in SME financing was the result of QIB’s successful ‘Aamaly’ programme, launched at the beginning of the year.”
“The programme identified economic sectors that fell under the SME category, and provided exceptional banking services as well as financial offers and incentives to the customers of this vital sector, which included manufacturing, trades and services, as well as contracting,” he said.
Through Aamaly the bank is aiming to raise the threshold in serving the SMEs sector while helping build a sustainable economic growth. Its policy reflects that of the government in carrying out Qatar’s National Vision 2030.
In addition, World Finance has also selected QIB as a member of its 2013 ‘World Finance 100’ list. The Bank won these awards for its performance and achievements during 2013 across all market segments.
The award, which was the latest in a long string of accolades given to QIB over the past, was based on the Bank’s performance over the past year.
Other recent awards and recognitions include the Best Islamic Bank in Qatar from Euromoney, The Banker, Islamic Finance News (IFN) and Global Finance.
The results of 2013 have maintained QIB’s leadership as the Best Islamic Bank in Qatar. QIB’s customer deposits saw a steep rise of 16.7 percent to reach QR50.4bn by the end of 2013 compared to QR43.1bn in 2012, thus enabling the bank to effectively support the constant growth of assets.
Total assets of the bank in 2013 increased by 5.7 percent to QR77.4bn compared to QR73.2bn in 2012.
Financing activities continue to be the major growth driver of the bank and have now reached QR47.1bn having added QR4bn, representing a 9.3 percent growth compared to QR43.1bn last year.
“The outcome of the ‘Aamaly’ programme, since its inception at the beginning of 2013, has exceeded our expectations. QIB has witnessed positive results on both the financial and services levels,” Gamal said.
The SME sector in Qatar has huge potential, and is expected to grow rapidly to play an important part of Qatar’s overall growth. QIB already enjoys a sizeable corporate and retail base and it also has a strong branch presence across the country to meet its customers’ growing requirements.
During 2013, Fitch affirmed the Bank’s long term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) of ‘A’ with a stable outlook. Similarly Standard & Poor’s Rating Services have also maintained QIB’s Counterparty Credit Rating at ‘A-’ with a stable outlook which reflects the strong position in Qatar’s rapidly expanding Islamic banking market, favourable operating environment and strong capitalisation.
World Finance is a financial magazine produced every two months. Since 2007, its awards have been celebrating achievement, innovation and brilliance in the industry.