By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Largest financial institution in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region, QNB Group, has announced its results for the three months ended March 31, 2018.
During the period, the lender’s net profit reached QAR3.4 billion ($0.9 billion), up by 7 percent compared to previous year, while the total assets increased by 12 percent from March 2017 to reach QAR834 billion ($229 billion), the highest ever achieved by the group.
It was learnt that the key driver of growth in total assets was from loans and advances which grew by 12 percent to reach QAR598 billion ($164 billion).
Also, QNB Group was successful in attracting funding, which resulted in increased customer funding by 12 percent to reach QAR604 billion ($166 billion). This enabled the Group to maintain its loans to deposits ratio at 99 percent.
The Group’s prudent cost control policy and strong revenue generating capability helped to improve the efficiency ratio (cost to income ratio) to 27.8 percent, which is considered one of the best ratios among financial institutions in the region.
The stock of non-performing loans ratio of 1.8 percent as at March 31, 2018 has been witnessed on a consistent basis, year on year, reflecting the high quality of the Group’s loan book and the effective management of credit risk. The Group’s conservative policy in regard to provisioning continued with the coverage ratio maintained at 110 percent as at March 31, 2018.
Total equity increased by 2 percent from March 2017 to reach QAR73 billion ($20 billion) as at March 31, 2018. Earnings per Share reached QAR3.6 ($1), compared to QAR3.3 ($0.9) in March 2017.
Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) calculated as per the QCB and Basel III requirements stood at 16 percent as at March 31, 2018, higher than the regulatory minimum requirements of the Qatar Central Bank and Basel Committee.
As part of QNB Group’s continued drive to enhance its status as a global financial institution, the Board of Directors have recommended to the Extraordinary General Assembly Meeting of shareholders (to be held on April 17, 2018), to approve the increase of non-Qatari ownership limit from 25 percent to 49 percent as well as increasing single ownership limit to be increased from 2 percent to 5 percent, in accordance with the applicable laws and regulations.
QNB’s successful funding from the international markets during the first three months of 2018 which mainly included capital market issuances of AUD700 million with a 5 and 10-year maturity in Australia, $720 million Formosa bonds in Taiwan, private placements totalling $2.5 billion with two – three year maturity and a three year senior unsecured syndicated term loan facility of $3.5 billion in February 2018.
QNB Group serves a customer base of more than 22 million customers with more than 28,000 staff resources operating from 1,200 locations and a network comprising more than 4,300 ATMs.
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