Commercial Bank of Qatar (CBQ), the second-largest lender in the country, bought a 14.7 per cent stake in the Sharjah-based United Arab Bank as part of a regional expansion plan.
Commercial Bank bought 104.6 million United Arab shares through an “off-market” transaction on the Abu Dhabi Securities Market, it said in a filing to Qatar’s stock exchange, without disclosing the price it paid or the seller.
United Arab, whose market value is less than a 10th of Emirates NBD, in September said CBQ agreed to buy 40 per cent of its shares for Dh7.75 each. That’s nine per cent more than the bank’s last trading price of November 22, and would value the purchase at $220 million (Dh807.8m).
Qatar’s economy will grow eight per cent this year and 11.8 per cent in 2008, according to International Monetary Fund forecasts, fuelled by sales of natural gas from the third-largest reserves in the world. Like bigger rival Qatar National Bank, Doha-based Commercial Bank is expanding overseas to find new customers as its home market comprises a population of about 1 million people. (REUTERS)