Gulf states’ actions to face financial crisis


 Qatar’s government took the latest step yesterday, saying it would buy listed shares within banks’ investment portfolios due to concerns over the banking sector. Below are details of government and central bank actions.

March 9: Qatar’s government said it would begin buying listed shares within banks’ investment portfolios before the end of the month.

January 19: The government ordered two domestic real estate companies to merge as consolidation rises to face global turmoil.

October 13: Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund, the Qatar Investment Authority, said it would buy 10 percent to 20 percent of listed banks’ capital to boost confidence.

October 9: Qatar central bank said it stood ready to act if needed. However, it opted not to match US Federal Reserve interest rate cuts since October.


January 19: The Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) cut its benchmark repurchase rate by 50 basis points to 2 percent and its reverse repurchase rate by 75 basis points to 0.75 percent. It said the cuts aimed to ensure credit was available to meet corporate demand.

December 16: SAMA lowered its repo rate by 50 basis points to 2.5 percent and its reverse repo by 50 basis points to 1.5 percent, ahead of a US Federal Reserve policy decision.

November 23: SAMA slashed its repo rate by 100 basis points to 3 percent on and also lowered bank reserve requirements to 7 percent from 10 percent.

October 26: The kingdom extended $ 2.67bn in credit to low-income citizens having difficulty getting access to loans.

October 21: SAMA poured $ 3bn in long-term bank deposits, its first direct injection of US dollars in a decade.

October 17: Saudi Arabia’s top economic body, the Supreme Economic Council, promised to guarantee bank deposits.


February 25: Dubai said it is working on a stimulus package to support small- and medium-sized companies.

February 25: Dubai’s real estate regulator said developers can access up to $ 2.2bn from escrow accounts to cover construction commitments.

February 22: Dubai launched a $ 20bn bond programme and sold the first $ 10bn tranche to the UAE central bank, easing worries state-linked companies could default on debts.

February 19: The central bank said it is working with the finance ministry to reduce interest rates on corporate deposits.

February 4: Abu Dhabi government said it plans to inject $ 4.4bn to recapitalise five of its banks.

January 19: UAE lowered overnight repurchase rate by 50 basis points to 1 percent. The central bank had refrained from cutting the benchmark after the US Federal Reserve slashed rates in December and November.

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