Qatar 2015 Banking

An increasingly competitive banking environment has encouraged lenders to seek out revenues in previously underserved sectors. Personal lending, for example, has become more important to the sector: in 2010 it accounted for 19.3% of aggregate bank lending, but by 2013 the segment’s share had grown to 23.6% of the credit mix. Meanwhile, lenders have begun to adopt SME-friendly measures such as dedicated branches and products. This segment of the market is expected to assume a more prominent position within the overall credit mix in coming years. As of January 2015 there were 18 licensed banks operating in Qatar’s banking sector, four of which operate in the sharia-compliant segment. Another 20 banks operate from the Qatar Financial Centre.

This chapter contains interviews with Sheikh Abdulla bin Saoud Al Thani, Governor, Qatar Central Bank; Ali Ahmed Al Kuwari, Group CEO, QNB; and Abdulla Saleh Al Raisi, CEO, The Commercial Bank of Qatar.