Posted on January 26, 2016

The Qatar Financial Centre’s (QFC) plans to broaden its business services by introducing additional tools to streamline its client interfaces is set to attract further foreign investment, according to Links Group, one of Qatar’s leading providers of commercial facilitation and advisory services. The services will be implemented by the first quarter of 2016 to encourage the transfer of best practices in its legal system, which is predominantly based on English common law. These include enabling QFC-licensed firms to be listed on the Qatar Stock Exchange, as well as the introduction of Companies Limited by Guarantee, which allows business councils and professional associations to set up within the QFC.

Links Group Qatar Financial Centre’s 2 [].jpgCommenting on the QFC’s plans John Martin St. Valery, founding partner of Links Group said: “The new laws will provide more scope for companies from varied service providers to set up and operate their businesses within a legal infrastructure that aims to adhere to international standards. “QFC-registered companies will be able to conduct business more freely across the country and ensure better market stability, which in turn will help to attract more international companies and foreign direct investments (FDI) to Qatar. While the Qatari Government remains committed to supporting and developing local enterprise, it also recognises the importance of bringing in external manpower and expertise to achieve ongoing, sustainable growth.

“Some of the attractive features that the QFC environment offers foreign companies include 100 percent foreign ownership, unlimited repatriation of fees and the ability to conduct on-shore business. However, in its role as a ‘change management agent’, the QFC faces the challenge of ensuring a suitable balance between the needs of the local stakeholders with those of foreign companies. “With its pro-business environment, fast-growing economy and geographical proximity to the rest of the world, Qatar presents attractive opportunities for businesses wanting to stimulate their home markets. As the country’s legislative environment becomes more efficient and aligned with international arbitration standards, we expect investment flow into the country will gather significant momentum over the next few years.”