Posted on March 24, 2015

Henk Hoogendoorn, Country Head of Mashreq Qatar, one of the Region’s leading financial institutions, highlighted the rapidly expanding growth opportunities in contracting and project finance at the 12th MEED Qatar Projects 2015 Conference which was held in Doha, Qatar from 10-11 March 2015. MEED Qatar Projects is the premier capital projects conference in Qatar and attracted more than 400 senior representatives from major local and international companies, government officials from Qatar and stakeholders from across the GCC and the wider world. Mashreq Qatar supported the event by being a silver sponsor.

In a panel discussion Henk shed light on the various funding options available to contractors to finance Qatar’s mega projects. Mr. Hoogendoorn drew attention to the specialized contracting finance department within Mashreq that has a long standing history of financing landmark transactions within the contracting sphere. Furthermore, he advised that international companies should actively work with Qatar’s experienced contracting sector on communication and managing expectations. Banks can play an active role in connecting Qatar to new international contractors that would like to do business.

Mashreq has financed more than 1,000 projects in the region in the last ten years, collectively valued at over US$35 billion. Now, in support of the pledge to boost infrastructure investment with new projects such as the Mega reservoirs, Football Stadiums, Qatar Rail and Ashghal projects, Mashreq Qatar is well placed to continue its leading role in Qatar’s infrastructure development by leveraging its regional experience to support contractors working in Qatar. Mashreq being in Qatar since 1971 can help in arranging local as well as international finance.

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Mashreq Qatar’s Country Head continued saying, that there is enough liquidity in the Market to finance all the projects but he foresees a need for more contract finance through international banks in the future as more projects are expected to be awarded. Outlining how the bank will support project financing, Henk added: “Mashreq Qatar provides contracting finance solutions for the local and regional markets with a customized approach to financing, arranging individual solutions on a project specific basis according to a contractor's specialization. In the last 12 months, Mashreq Qatar has supported projects including Doha Metro by Qatar Railways Company, Hamad International Airport, New Port Project (Hamad Port) and Lusail Real Estate Development Company.”

On behalf of Contracting Finance team, Zain Mumtaz, Relationship Manager participated in a panel discussion on the rising construction costs in Qatar. He spoke about the derivatives offered to clients of Mashreq that allows them to hedge commodity and FX costs earlier in the projects thereby safeguarding them against unexpected shocks. Mumtaz spoke about higher salaries and wages in Qatar contributing to the escalating construction costs.