QIA repatriates $20 billion to bail out banks

A recently published bond prospectus has confirmed that Qatar’s largest sovereign wealth fund (SWF) has repatriated $20 billion in an attempt to shore up its banking sector, which is feeling the effects of a trade embargo from its Gulf neighbours.

The Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) is the world’s ninth largest SWF with approximately $300 billion of assets. Qatar issued the prospectus in preparation for the country’s first dollar-denominated bond sale in two years.

The prospectus shows that almost $30 billion of non-resident deposits have left Qatari banks since the boycott was started in June 2017.

The cash injections will be supported by an easing of a cap on bank loans and a new definition of deposits to include long-term debt instruments.

The QIA has been an active international investor in recent years, acquiring high profile assets such as Harrods department store and stakes in Volkswagen, Glencore and Barclays. The fund has divested some of these holdings in recent months including its share in Veoila Entertainment, sold for $622 million in March.

©2018 funds global mena

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