Mr. Abdul Aziz bin Nasser Al Khalifa, Chief Executive Officer of Qatar Development Bank (QDB), affirmed that the Bank is keen to strengthen economic ties with the Turkish counterparts by increased openness of trade policy processes in general, through exporting Qatari products to Turkish markets and thus creating partnerships between Qatari and Turkish companies, which in the end will enhance promising business opportunities for both countries. In an interview with the Business Bridge he said: “QDB helped Qatari exporters to participate in the export trade fairs, with a total of 185, while the bank succeeded in qualified 1000 entrepreneurs, supported 500 local companies to reach international markets. During the year 2017, the bank’s financing portfolio rose to about SR 8 billion. QDB financed all projects that contribute to the added value of the local economy, especially those related to the main
industrial sectors.The details regarding the Interview are as follows:
Qatar has launched a number of initiatives to support the growth of the economy, although QDB is one of the most important of these initiatives. What are the roles assigned to Qatar Development Bank to support the economy?
Qatar Development Bank plays a key role in developing the economic process by providing financial and all necessary advisory services needed by SMEs under one roof. These include direct financing, debt financing, export promotion and development, feasibility studies and Market Access Studies.
What are the most important services provided by QDB to support the SMEs sector and entrepreneurs?
The Bank offers a wide range of financial services through direct loans and Qatari export financing as well as credit insurance for Qatari exports. QDB is also indirectly financing through Al Dameen Program, as well as investing in SMEs companies (Ithmaar, Istithmar) Further, the consultancy services
include feasibility studies, preparation of business plans, legal services, accountingand auditing services, tax certification, marketing and public relations services, as well as the development of franchises
and advisory services designed to Troubled Company Restructuring, known as the SMEs Clinic, as well as the capacity development program and business incubator.
2017 had advantages, what are the most important achievements of QDB during the previous year?
Certainly, the Bank had a number of achievements during the year 2017. In terms of financial performance, the bank’s financing portfolio rose to about SR 8 billion. Also QDB financed all projects that contributing to the added value of the local economy, especially those related to the main industrial sectors. The value of approved guarantees through “Al-Dameen” program amounted to QR 303 million in 2017, an increase of 17.4%, the number of projects benefiting from the program stood at 300. On the other hand, the value of disbursed housing loans amounted to QR 1.6 billion. In addition to its initiatives in the industrial field, QDB launched several initiatives, most notably Jahez I and Jahez II. Jahiz I project, which includes 32 factories in the fields of plastics, aluminum and electronics and has been awarded to Qatari entrepreneurs, started production towards achieving part of local sufficiency. Jahiz II, meanwhile, helped in equipping 16 factories in the field of food and beverages. QDB helped Qatari exporters to participate in the export trade fairs, with a total of 185, while the volume of contracts through bilateral meetings reached QR155m. In 2017, QDB provided several consulting services to many of the bank’s clients. It carried out 205 market research reports, 117 economic feasibility reports and
417 services to Qatari entrepreneurs and SMEs. The bank qualified 1000 entrepreneurs, supported 500 local companies to reach international markets. As part of supporting domestic industries, QDB supported in 2017 home-based entrepreneurs through “Made at Home” exhibition, in which 144 exhibitors took part with sales amounting to QR4m. In recognition of the development organization’s leading position in creating
a series of direct and indirect financial assistance programs for SMEs, QDB was named `Best SME Loan’ awarded by the International Federation of Arab Bankers during the `Arab Banks Awards and Commendations of Excellence 2017’.
What is QDB plan for during the current year 2018?
2018 will witness several activities that have been highlighted to cope with any emergency changes. Our focus will be on increasing the need for growth in the sectors served by Qatar Development Bank, which includes industry and services. In addition to supporting companies to self-sufficiency by further increasing the focus on localization and exportation abroad, optimizing the financial services offered by the bank, enhancing knowledge creation and capacity building through training and advisory services, creating a single platform to enable entrepreneurs to access all the different services of the bank, from which the client journey begins.
What is the purpose of QDB’s Qatar Export Development Agency, “TASDEER”? What are the future
plans of the Agency during the current year 2018?
QDB’s Qatar Export Development Agency, “TASDEER” was established in 2011 to support the development and promotion of non-oil Qatari exports produced by SMEs in order to reach new
foreign markets by providing a wide range of services and initiatives aimed at enabling private to identify their export opportunities and tap into world markets in a sustainable manner. Another target is to provide economic diversification and contribute to building a sustainable competitive economy in
the State of Qatar. As for the 2018 plans, participation will include 17 international exhibitions
related to construction, food, furniture and design, technology, plastics, electricity, medical equipment and medicines , in addition to a number of workshops and trade missions.
Procurement and Contracting Conference and Exhibition “Moushtarayat” organized by the QDB on an annual basis in cooperation with the Ministry of Finance. What is the purpose of this exhibition?
The 2018 Government Procurement and Contracting Conference and Exhibition “ Moushtarayat” aims to support Qatari SMEs by helping them participate in public tenders via providing current public tender information from major buyers, such as government and semigovernment entities and larger private sector companies, as well as educating participants at the exhibition Procedures for participating in future tenders and how to progress properly. In early 2017, QDB, in partnership with the Ministry of Finance, organized the 2nd procurement and contracting exhibition, with 242 deals worth 700 million riyals.
Do you think the investment environment in Qatar is
Today, Qatar is a key player in the global economy and investment arena. Through its open economic policies, Qatar has been able to improve the investment environment in and attract many foreign
investments that have contributed to the growth of both the oil and private sectors. Through continuous planning, Qatar aspires to develop the volume of foreign investments to support the national economy in general and the knowledgebased private sectors in particular.
The economic ties between Qatar and Turkey have crossed the border. Perhaps the field of investments
and banks are an important aspect of these relations. Have QDB any plans to support and strengthen
these economic ties?
Qatar Development Bank is keen to strengthen its ties with the Turkish counterparts in the economic field by increasing the trade exchange and particularly exporting Qatari products
to Turkish markets and thus creating partnerships between Qatari and Turkish companies. This could create many opportunities for business communities on both sides. There have been mutual visits between us to share experiences and enhance cooperation. All these come as part of the strategy of QDB, which is always keen to learn and benefit from best practices, to develop the quality of services and
programs that will promote the Qatari exports.