Qatar said to tell banks to seek overseas funding
QATAR

DUBAI • Qatar is telling its banks to tap international investors to raise financing, instead of mainly relying on government funding, people familiar with the matter said, as the impact of the ongoing Saudi-led boycott puts pressure on liquidity.

The central bank is holding regular meetings with lenders to gauge how the standoff is affecting liquidity, and is encouraging banks to borrow inter- nationally through bonds and loans to avoid further depletion of foreign reserves and credit rating downgrades, said the people, asking not to be identified because the matter is private. Banks have been told they should ask for government funding as a last resort, they said.

Some banks and government-related entities are planning fundraising deals to help with tightening liquidity, the people said. Most borrowers plan to target investors in Asia to fill the gap left by Gulf lenders, they said. Qatar Islamic Bank SAQ recently raised financing in yen and Australian dollars through private placements, one of the people said.

Qatari lenders are under pressure after Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut diplomatic relations and closed transport routes in June. — Bloomberg