DOHA- The Qatar Investment Authority
has deployed more than half of the $45 billion earmarked for the United States since 2015 and most of its future investments will go to the infrastructure sector, its chief executive said on Wednesday.
"Back in 2015 I committed to invest $45 billion in the next five years. Now I can say we've deployed more than 50 percent," Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohamed bin Saud al-Thani told an audience in a speech at Carnegie Mellon University Qatar.
He later told reporters most of the remaining money allocated for the United States is being invested in the infrastructure sector.
Qatar's interest in infrastructure comes amid President Donald Trump's pledge to speed approvals for highways and other projects as part of his proposal for a $1 trillion boost to fix aging U.S. infrastructure.
Other wealth funds in the Gulf region such as Kuwait Investment Authority and Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund are also targeting infrastructure investments.
Al-Thani said QIA
has not divested from any banks. QIA
holds stakes in Credit Suisse , Barclays and in major Qatari banks.
Last month he was quoted as saying there were no plans to liquidate foreign assets -- as some investors had speculated -- and that the fund would soon announce big new international investments.
Qatar's economy has been under pressure since June 5 when Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut diplomatic and transport ties with Doha, accusing it of backing terrorism, a charge which Doha denies.
(Reporting by Alexander Cornwell, Editing by Sylvia Westall) ((Saeed.Azhar@thomsonreuters.com; +65-64035664; Reuters Messaging: firstname.lastname@example.org))