Jaber bin Hajjaj Al-Ashahwani, Vice Chairman at Dlala Brokerage & Investment Holding Co. in Qatar, and a major investor in the Qatar Stock Exchange, broke down in tears during a live interview while discussing Qatar’s economic situation after the anti-terror quartet boycotted Qatar.
“I hope that investors feel the pain we are going through in Qatar,” Ashahwani said emotionally after the host asked him what he would tell investors and the Qataris amid the country’s current circumstances.
In a way, his tears are ample testimony to the state of collapse of the Qatari stock exchange, indicating that investors have been fleeing the country. His tears also indicate the size of the “catastrophic” damage which the Qatari economy is going through.
Ashahwani contradicted himself while voicing his expectations for the results of Qatari companies for the third quarter of 2017, voicing his optimism and said the profits from the listed companies will carry a positive “surprise”.
Later, he again expressed his displeasure with how the economic conditions have turned out to be.
This is the first time “defeat” has been acknowledged by a Qatari official following the losses on the Qatari Stock Exchange suffered after foreign investment funds exited.
According to many reports, including one by Reuters, there is worry in the Qatari Stock Exchange as they await the banking and companies sector fourth quarter results, which are expected to be affected by the crisis.
According to a survey carried out by Al-Arabiya.net, Qatar’s Stock Exchange has lost more than 18 percent of its market value in four months, i.e. ever since the crisis erupted. Meanwhile, its losses since the beginning of 2017 are more than 22 percent. This means that it is close to losing one fourth of its market value, thus recording one of the worst years in its history.
A massive amount of $33.3 billion (124 billion Qatari riyals) have evaporated from Qatar’s Stock Exchange during this year, i.e. in the past nine months, as the total market value of listed shares was 563.5 billion riyals on the first day of trading in 2017.
Earlier in October, Qatar’s government announced measures to help private sector businesses after its economy was hurt by sanctions imposed by other Arab states.
Prime Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al-Thani decided to cut rents paid by companies in Qatar’s logistics zones in half during 2018 and 2019, official news agency QNA reported.
New investors in the zones will be completely exempt from paying rents for a year if they obtain building permits by certain deadlines. Qatar Development Bank, a state-founded body which lends to firms, will postpone receiving loan instalments for up to six months to facilitate industrial sector projects.
It is expected that more funds are likely to exit Qatar’s Stock Exchange which means there will be more losses to the market value if Gulf countries continue to boycott Doha.