Seetharaman said the European Central Bank has started to taper its largescale asset purchases, which have played a critical role in reviving euro area growth but has also signalled that interest-rate increases are a more distant prospect. He said the recent Fed meeting had acknowledged the quickening pace of inflation and has forecast three rate increases this year after raising borrowing costs three times in 2017.
“We had also seen surge in bond yields and slump in capital markets in recent times. India is expected to grow well following last year’s slowdown due to demonetisation and the implementation of goods and services tax (GST). Speaking on the Qatari economy, Seetharaman said Qatar emerged strong despite the economic blockade, citing various reforms to transform itself into a self-reliant economy. He also noted that Qatar’s banking sector is resilient.
The forum also highlighted reforms undertaken by the government such as the 2018 budget, which was allocated for key sectors like health, education, and infrastructure. He said the total allocation for the health, education, and transportation sector stood at QR83.5bn or 41% of the total expenditure. “A new law for Public Private Partnership (PPP) businesses in Qatar should provide an additional level of comfort to the private sector and foreign investors. In terms of food security, Qatar now have many local companies that are supporting the country and it can develop these businesses further and boost its food production to provide both locally and internationally. Qatar’s landmark residency plan is a welcoming social and economic reform.
“Qatar has also waived entry visa requirements for citizens of 80 countries. As Doha Bank clients realign itself to the changing market dynamics, Doha Bank will offer solutions taking into consideration the client requirements. Doha Bank will leverage on its cross selling capabilities on trade, treasury and investments, retail and insurance for the benefit of the client,” Seetharaman said.During the event, Dheeraj Ahluwalia of the Retail Banking Unit provided insight on the value proposition from the retail segment, while Pramit Kotian of the Treasury Unit discussed treasury solutions available for customers.
Other Doha Bank executives delivered the following topics: Kapil Kumar (Cash Management Unit) ‘Cash Management Solutions and WPS’; Brett Pennington (Doha Bank Assurance Company) ‘Insurance Value Proposition Available for Customers’; Hesham Kalla (Investments Unit) ‘Investment Offerings’; and Namit Gattani (Trade Finance Sales) ‘Trade Finance Solutions Offered by Doha Bank’.
Sources and photo-credits: Gulf Times