Blockade has had only a minimal impact on Qatar, says QIA chief

Blockade has had only a minimal impact on Qatar, says QIA chief

QLNews
By QLNews

Qatar has been undergoing an illegal blockade, imposed by four neighbouring countries, since June 5. However, that has not had much of an impact on Qatar’s economic scene, a top official has said.

Once the blockade was declared, the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) and the Qatar Central Bank (QCB) swiftly stepped in to support the country's banking system, said QIA’s Chief Executive Officer HE Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohamed bin Saud Al Thani.

“The siege nations blocked us from using the air space, territorial water and land access. They stopped us from accessing their banking system, which is a very serious thing. The credit lines were all cancelled. The QCB and QIA had to intervene to support our banking system. It was a truly serious matter,” he was quoted as saying by Gulf Times.

He was speaking at the Georgetown University in Qatar as part of a series of events to commemorate the Qatar National Day.

“QIA invests in a number of banks both locally and internationally. When foreign investors started pulling out money from Qatari banks and when access to the Gulf banking system was stopped and wasn’t available, QIA intervened along with the central bank by moving funds from overseas into our banking system. QIA provided cash for the bank to offset any withdrawals,” he explained. 
HE Sheikh Abdullah noted that the severing of diplomatic ties by some GCC countries a few years ago was a signal for Qatar.

“We had assessed the situation in every detail and learnt that we should be vigilant in every action. During the present crisis, Qatar Airways has also played a huge role in overcoming the situation in several fields,” he added.
Meanwhile, Gulf Times also reported that the QIA is considering making investments in Katara and Qatar Airways. 
“Katara is in the pipeline and Qatar Airways could be the next one. These are the two companies that we see on our radar in the mid-term. We’re trying to create good portfolio for them,” HE Sheikh Abdullah was quoted as saying.

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