Qatar National Bank, the Middle East's biggest bank, yesterday said it aimed to almost double its foreign ownership limit, nine months into a regional crisis with Doha at its center. "QNB Group intends to recommend to the Extraordinary General Assembly of the Bank, to approve increasing the percentage of non-Qatari ownership in the Company's capital to 49 percent instead of 25 percent," read a statement released by QNB. The bank said it would announce the date for the EGA "in due course".
The proposed move comes at a time of political and economic crisis for Qatar, which has seen neighboring former allies led by Saudi Arabia implement an ongoing trade boycott of Doha over accusations of ties to Iran and Islamist groups. Qatar denies the allegations. Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut all ties with Qatar last June, closing its only land border and banning all flights to and from the emirate.