26/09/2017 06:09 AST

Qatar’s third-largest lender, Commercial Bank, is considering borrowing money on the Taiwanese bond market, its group chief executive told Reuters.

The plan to tap Asian markets is because Qatari banks have been locked out of Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain since those Arab countries cut diplomatic and economic ties with Doha in June.

Commercial Bank could tap the Taiwan’s Formosa bond market “in the next few months”, depending on appetite, group chief executive Joseph Abraham told Reuters in Doha. He said that $250mn would be the minimum the bank would be interested in raising and the move would give comfort to investors.

“This, to me, is just showing that we are tapping into the international markets as we did always, so that again gives them comfort the business is running as usual,” Abraham said. Formosa bonds are sold in Taiwan by foreign issuers and denominated in currencies other than the Taiwanese dollar.

The Gulf crisis has caused unease among some international financial institutions. In Europe, most have taken a wait-and-see approach.

“As it continues and they can see Qatar remains resilient and still functioning well, I think they are becoming a little more relaxed,” Abraham said.

Asian lenders, however, have continued to express appetite for Qatari paper, particularly institutions from China, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan, he said.

Qatar’s largest lender, QNB, this month said it had raised $630mn in the Formosa market. However, Abraham said, some other parts of the business are affected by the crisis. Board meetings at United Arab Bank (UAB), an Emirati lender 40% owned by Commercial Bank, are now held by video conference because of travel restrictions imposed by the UAE, Abraham said. He also said the two banks would be unlikely to work together on cross-border loans, as they have in the past, in the current circumstances.

Though Commercial Bank funding costs have risen by about 20 basis points, Abraham said the bank is able to mitigate that by repricing assets and increasing its transaction banking fund base.

Qatar has pumped billions of dollars into local banks since the crisis began in an effort to cushion the sector from withdrawals by the four Arab countries.

“The country has the reserves and capability to manage,” Abraham said, later adding that “the central bank will do what’s required to ensure the banking system remains solid”. Commercial Bank has no plans to change its five-year strategy, unveiled late last year, amid the ongoing Gulf crisis, he said.

The bank has since raised its Common Equity Tier 1 ratio, a key measure of a lender’s ability to absorb losses, to 11.4% from 10%, he said.

Provisioning is expected to normalise at the start of next year and the cost-income ratio has dropped to 38% from 45%, he said, adding that Commercial Bank aims to reduce that to 30%.

Gulf Times

Commercial Bank targets top Qatari talent at career fair


Commercial Bank’s National Development Team will be participating at the Education City Career Fair from February 6 to 7, 2018 to recruit top Qatari nationals.

Commercial Bank’s National De

The Peninsula

Commercial Bank has ‘sufficient potential to grow’ in Qatar: CEO


Commercial Bank has “sufficient potential to grow significantly in Qatar” over the next few years, said Group CEO Joseph Abraham. “Our primary focus will remain on Qatar. Qatar is an AA-rated econom

Gulf Times

Commercial Bank plans to boost lending to state firms


Commercial Bank of Qatar is pushing to increase lending to state-run companies as the government presses ahead with infrastructure projects to counter the impact of the Saudi-led boycott against the

Gulf Times

Ticker Price Volume
QNBK 135.11 271,276
DHPS 0.00 0
STC 82.27 233,047
SG 1.15 0
WALAA 33.86 2,209,324
BURUJ 33.42 314,360
SABIC 109.91 2,832,079
CBQK Sector Market
Dividend Yield (%)
Relative Strength
  • 1-Month
  • 3-Month
  • 1-Year
Volume Change
  • 10D Avg Vs 90D Avg
Price Vs…
  • 52-w high
  • 50-day moving avg.
  • 200-Day Moving Avg
Ticker Price Change
QNBK 135.11 -4.87 (-3.48%)
MARK 36.41 -0.59 (-1.60%)
QIBK 98.49 -0.01 (-0.02%)
QIIK 56.70 0.70 (1.25%)
DHBK 27.20 0.25 (0.92%)
New York allure fades for Saudi Aramco as ‘frivolous’ climate change actions loom


When Khalid Al-Falih, Saudi Arabian oil minister and chairman of Saudi Aramco, told a TV interviewer of the “risk” and “concern” associated with New York financial markets, it was the first time a se

Arab News

Aramco: Saudi in form and bearing, but with an American backbone of modernity and efficiency


In the Saudi Aramco archive there is a fading black-and-white photograph that might serve as a metaphor for the oil company and its heritage. Max Steineke was born in the state of Oregon, US, attende

Arab News

Milaha plans global expansion, cost optimisation for higher returns


Milaha (Qatar Navigation) will undertake selective international expansion and cost optimisation with a plan to strengthen the domestic operations this year as part of strategies to generate higher r

Gulf Times

Doha Insurance Group seeks to open rep offices in London and Beirut


Doha Insurance Group is seeking to open representative offices in London and Beirut that will underwrite reinsurance business, including energy risks, life and medical insurance, pending official app

Gulf Times

GWC honoured at ‘Progress Qatar 2017-18’ launch


GWC was recognised as one of the top business leaders in Qatar during Oryx Publishing’s launch ceremony of the 14th edition of Progress Qatar 2017-18, held in the Hilton Hotel Doha on March 14, 2018.

The Peninsula