Qatar sovereign wealth fund to buy shares of country’s banks

October 14th, 2008 - 1:25 pm ICT by IANS  

Dubai, Oct 14 (IANS) With Gulf bourses rebounding Monday after a week of mayhem triggered by the global credit crunch, Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund has announced that it would buy up to 20 percent of Qatari banks’ shares.Khalid Bin Rashid Al Khater, director of the Economic Policies Department at Qatar Central Bank (QCB), said that the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) was buying up to 20 percent shares of Qatari banks to support the banks’ capitals and improve their financial situation.

In a statement to state-run Qatar News Agency (QNA), Al Khater said that the QIA decision was in line with global trends in increasing the role of the state in the national economy and based on International Convergence of Capital Measurement and Capital Standards or Basel II measures.

Asked whether this move was an acknowledgement on the part of the state that the global financial crisis has had its impact on Qatar, Al Khater said that all countries without exception were affected by the crisis in one way or the other depending upon their exposure to the world financial markets.

He, however, reiterated that the Qatari economy was strong as recognized by all international rating agencies and added that the country’s economy was capable of absorbing all the impacts of this crisis.

Keeping with Monday’s trend in other key Gulf bourses, the Doha Securities Market rose 8.45 percent from the previous day’s close to end at 7,624.09 points.

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