Qatar Development Bank (QDB) has signed a new Al-Dhameen Programme Portfolio Agreement with Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB) for small and medium enterprise (SME) financing in Qatar.
Al-Dhameen, which is sponsored by QDB, helps startups and existing companies with lack of collateral to obtain funds for growing their businesses. All main sector business activities are eligible for support under Al-Dhameen except the agriculture, fishing and livestock; non-oil mining and quarrying; wholesale and retail trade; financial and insurance, and real estate industries.
The programme does not provide direct finance to SMEs, instead offering the business owner access to the required finance from a partner bank in the form of guarantees in favour of the bank. Al-Dhameen guarantees 85% of the finance value not exceeding QR15 million).
The Al-Dhameen programme was enhanced after feedback from partner banks and related parties, primarily to expand the base of beneficiaries, allow partner banks to determine which SMEs receive financing, and to fund them more flexibly. A record QR846 million in guarantees have been disbursed to over 348 SMEs since the beginning of the programme in 2010.
The new QR100 million Al Dhameen portfolio aims to speed up approvals to guarantee the value of the funding provided by the partner bank to small and medium enterprises lacking sufficient guarantees. QDB has prepared a special portfolio guide that describes the terms, conditions, and international standards, due diligence, credit monitoring, applications and guidelines development, to help QIB to take the necessary decisions without referring to QDB.
Abdulaziz Bin Nasser Al-Khalifa, CEO of QDB said: "The Al Dhameen programme primarily facilitates financing to some of the most important sectors of industry, such as education, healthcare, and value-added services. The programme targets mainly companies and startups. We are delighted with this partnership with QIB, which (reinforces the priority) that all banks operating in Qatar have to support and develop the SME sector, diversifying the private sector and building a knowledge-based economy.”
Bassel Gamal, QIB Group Chief Executive Officer said: “This agreement underscores 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 the Qatar National Vision 2030. It enables our existing and potential 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 QDB, and we are committed to further enhance the mutual cooperation to achieve the agreement’s objectives which will contribute significantly in speeding up the process to provide financing solutions for SMEs. Supporting the SME sector is one of our top priorities, and for that reason, we have a dedicated programme, Aamaly, designed to cater for all the financial needs of SMEs in Qatar.”
Commercial Bank and Doha Bank are also partner banks for Al-Dhameen, having signed agreements with QDB in July 2015.
SMEs can enquire about applications at the nearest QIB branch.