Investors in Chinese-born Qatari businessman accused of bribery are likely to be more bullish on the country
Investors in a Chinese-based Qatari-born businessman accused by U.S. prosecutors of bribery and fraud are likely, according to new research from the University of Oxford and Cambridge Business School.
Qatar is a key U.N. Security Council member, and its president, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, has been a close ally of President Donald Trump’s.
The research, which uses data from the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), found that Qatari investors are increasingly buying stocks in companies that operate in the Gulf, including a range of U.K.-based energy companies and a Chinese telecoms operator that provides internet access to Qatar.
The findings come as the Trump administration and the State Department are pursuing criminal charges against the Qatari ambassador to the United States and a former Qatari diplomat, accused of taking bribes and other improper actions to help advance the interests of the kingdom’s ruling family.
Qatari investors in U.B.S.-based companies have been investing in Qataris stocks in recent months, according the research, published in the journal World Politics and International Relations.
They include investments in the United Kingdom’s BAE Systems, which owns the British nuclear industry and operates in the Middle East and North Africa, as well as a Chinese telecommunications company.
In a statement, the BIS said:The results of the research are based on data from financial market data provided by the BSE Global Financial Database.
They do not include transactions between Qataris and foreign investors in Qatar and any of the entities in the UAE.
The research uses data that is publicly available in the databases.BIS data shows that the total value of UBS’ foreign exchange reserves for Qatari assets held in the U.A.E., the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and the United Republic of Tanzania is $7.2 billion, according a January 2016 analysis.BSE Global financial Database data for the UAE also shows that Qatar’s foreign exchange holdings totalled $6.7 billion in 2015.
The value of the assets is not directly comparable to the value of Qatari bonds, but rather reflects the level of foreign exchange that has been issued to the UAE since 2011, according BSE data.
The data also shows Qatar’s foreign-exchange reserves in the third quarter of 2017, after a $3.5 billion decline in the same period last year.
The BIS data does not differentiate between stocks held by the Qatar Investment Authority and other entities controlled by the government, but it shows that UBS’s QIA holdings totalling $8.2 million in Qatari securities held by QIA are valued at $1.9 billion, compared with $1 billion for the other QIA entities.
Banks have also been taking a keen interest in the Qatar investment environment, with one Qatari bank saying last month that it had signed a memorandum of understanding with a UBS-Qatari bank for the exchange of capital between the two entities.