In anticipation of its launch of this year’s Jahiz I initiative – a program dedicated to supporting a number of industrial sectors, including: chemicals, plastics, wood materials, and electronics – Qatar Development Bank (QDB) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with QNB and Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB) to finance the developmental scheme through the framework of Al Dhameen indirect loan guarantee facility.
The signing ceremony was held at QDB’s headquarters, and serving their respective organizations as designated signatories were Executive Director of Business Finance, QDB, Khalid Abdulla al-Mana; Assistant General Manager (AGM), SME Banking, QNB, Khaled al-Nuaimi and WSG – GM, QIB, Tarek Youssef Fawzi;
As provided in the MoU, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) participating in the Jahiz I initiative may now access finances up to 70% of the project value with a maximum limit of up to QAR 15 million per project. Moreover, the participating companies can now obtain the required funding within 10 working days at competitive financing rates. The partner banks will also extend lending to SMEs by providing adequate safeguards through the existing Al Dhameen indirect loan guarantee facility. Executive Director of Business Finance, QDB, Khalid Abdulla al-Mana said: "We are truly delighted to sign this agreement—I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to Qatar National Bank and Qatar Islamic Bank. Their generous contribution will important role in enabling the entrepreneurs of the Jahiz I initiative to expand their businesses, which in turn will lead to the development of the private sector, create economic diversity, and lead to the building of a knowledge-based economy.”
He added: "Through the signing of today’s MoU, QDB enlists the support of our national financial institutions to facilitate funding for Jahiz I projects. The development of our indigenous industrial ecosystem is in line with the larger objectives at QDB—our strategy to advance economic development through the provision of wide-ranging services, including consulting and financing services for entrepreneurs and SMEs, is crafted to accomplish the Qatar National Vision 2030 and promote economic diversification in the State of Qatar." Assistant General Manager (AGM), SME Banking, QNB, Khaled Al-Nuaimi said: “We are proud to partner with Qatar Development Bank for the Jahiz I initiative. We are confident that this project will become a strong driving force that will stimulate the private sector as envisioned in Qatar National Vision 2030 as well as further build upon QNB Group’s organizational practice of supporting SMEs.”
WSG – GM, QIB, Tarek Youssef Fawzi said: “The Jahiz I agreement exemplifies QIB’s commitment towards supporting the country’s economy, by enhancing the role of the private sector and contributing to a suitable economic diversification as part of Qatar National Vision 2030. It also allows our customers to get what they need swiftly and seamlessly, thus supporting the establishment of new SMEs and helping operating companies with their business expansion plans.” “We are proud of our strong ties with Qatar Development Bank, and we are committed to further enhance the mutual cooperation to achieve the agreement’s objectives, which will contribute significantly in providing financing solutions for the Jahiz I SMEs. Supporting the SME sector is one of our top priorities, and for that reason, we have a dedicated program ‘Aamaly’ designed to cater for all the financial needs of Small and Medium enterprises in Qatar,” added Fawzi.
In a similar effort, QDB previously launched the “Al Dhameen portfolio”—a QAR 100 million portfolio, aimed at facilitating and expediting approvals from partner banks to secure funding for SMEs that lacked sufficient guarantees. The portfolio was designed to facilitate financing procedures for sectors that held great importance for the national economy, such as manufacturing industries, education and health care as well as value-added services. The Al Dhameen program mainly caters to new startups and existing companies that have a revenue turnover of less than or equal to QAR 30 million.
The ongoing Jahiz I initiative offers 32 new rental facilities on specially-discounted rates of QAR 5/m2 per month. The sites are purpose-built to host a variety of eco-friendly manufacturing businesses in the industrial area and vary in size from between 2,500 to 3,000 square meters. Moreover, they support an electric capacity of 350 – 800 kilowatts. The scheme seeks to bring down the barriers to entry for small and medium-sized manufacturing businesses that are involved in the chemicals, plastics, wood and electronics industries.
In addition to assisting manufacturing industries through Jahiz I, QDB also incentivizes the development of the farming industry through its Jahiz II initiative, which offers 14 dedicated facilities for manufacturers in the food and beverage sector in Qatar. This MoU between QDB, QNB and QIB is the latest in a string of initiatives by QDB to promote economic diversity. Through providing capital, guarantees and advisory services, QDB seeks to stimulate the local private sector and empower the manufacturers of non-oil and gas Qatari products.