Digital Fintechs are redefining Qatar

Advanced economies growth is projected at 5.6 percent in 2021 and 4.4 percent in 2022 respectively


The Qatar Fintech Summit, a virtual expo and Summit on Fintech took place on 24th August 2021. Dr. R. Seetharaman, CEO of Doha Bank Spoke on “The Future of Mobile and Digital only Banking”. He gave insight on Global economies. He said “According to IMF July 2021, the global economy is projected to grow 6.0 percent in 2021 and 4.9 percent in 2022 respectively. Advanced economies growth is projected at 5.6 percent in 2021 and 4.4 percent in 2022 respectively. Emerging and developing economies is projected at 6.3 percent in 2021 and 5.2 percent in 2022.”

Dr. R. Seetharaman gave insight on COVID-19 impact. He said “2020 was an inflection point for individuals, businesses, and economies around the globe. E-commerce, having deep interests on both sides, rose as a natural winner. Building loyal customers by leveraging on technology. The pandemic prompted a massive increase in online distribution. Fintechs started leveraging on this.”

Dr. R. Seetharaman highlighted on fintech developments. He said “Fintech is one of the developments arising from the fourth industrial revolution. FinTech is the application of technology and innovation to solve the needs of consumers and firms in the financial space — think credit cards, online banking, and block chain-powered cryptocurrencies. Fintech enable digital transformation in Banks. It has compelled banks to level up their digital transformation and actively seek to implement the latest advancements. Roughly 85 per cent of the fintech firms in MENA operate in the payments, transfer and remittances sectors. Fintech firms in Qatar are focused on improving the customer experience by providing more accessible financial services. “

Dr. R. Seetharaman gave insight on investment trends in fintech. He said “According to KPMG, “Global fintech investment reached a record $98bn in the first half of 2021, up from $87.1bn in the same period in 2020.The UK saw a huge slice of cash invested into fintech with $24.5bn of fintech investment in the first half of 2021. EMEA saw $39billion invested in the first six months. Venture capital (VC) investments in Qatari startups have surged by 182% in H1, 2021 totaling QR31mn.””

Dr. R. Seetharaman gave insight on “future of mobile and digital only banking.” He said “Mobile banking and digital banking will be felt in internet of things, block chain and open banking. Digital banks key success factors include differentiated value proposition, early revenue recognition, quick scalability and cost efficiency. New fintech mobile players will emerge but not replace traditional banks. Asia’s digital licensing process began with Chinese regulators and has since expanded around the region, with central banks in South Korea, Taiwan China, and Hong Kong SAR China granting limited numbers of licenses. Singapore has set up a digital banking license application process and Malaysia issued a draft licensing framework. Digital Fintechs experience in Nordic countries, Asian and America indicates immense potential for the same. Qatar aims to develop FinTechs as well as support entrepreneurs and innovators to make an impact within the domain, both regionally and globally. The fintechs are redefining Qatar.”

Dr. R. Seetharaman highlighted role of Doha Bank in fintech. He said “Doha bank being active member of Qatar FinTech hub (QFTH), a Qatar Development Bank’s Fintech incubator since beginning. As one of the leading commercial banks in the state of Qatar, we are constantly innovating and seek to partner with and help the FinTech ecosystem grow. It is a key objective for Doha Bank to support the transformation of the financial ecosystem in Qatar to achieve the vision set by the Qatar Central Bank. That is why, we value and appreciate the work conducted by QDB & QFTH in providing such important programs. We have previously built customer-centric propositions leveraging on FinTech collaborations. Our Digital Wallet, which has seen very high customer adoption and engagement is a result of FinTech collaboration. Our face and voice authentication on mobile banking is another successful use case of FinTech adoption. Doha Bank has also provide payment gateway solutions to certain Fintechs. Among our key initiatives is partnering with FinTech startups, & the QFTH programs have been very beneficial in providing us access to leading FinTechs who are eager to explore the Qatari market. We are ecstatic to partner with few of them and provide innovative technology first solutions to our customers”

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