USQBC Hosts CEO of QIA for Roundtable in Washington
Washington, DC — June 27, 2017: The US-Qatar Business Council (USQBC) on Tuesday hosted a roundtable discussion for its member companies with His Excellency Sheikh Abdulla bin Mohammed Al Thani, the CEO of Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), and his accompanying delegation, in Washington, DC.
Sheikh Abdulla described QIA’s ambition to diversify its portfolio, both internationally and within the United States. He emphasized that the 2015 commitment to invest $35 billion in the United States over the following five years remains strong and is a clear message that they wish to diversify a portfolio now heavily concentrated in Europe. Building on the nearly $26 billion invested in the US since 2015, QIA committed to investing another $10 billion and expanding the portfolio to include infrastructure projects.
The discussion also touched on the diversification and expansion of Qatar’s portfolio geographically within the United States. Sheikh Abdulla announced that QIA will soon open an office in San Francisco to bring their team closer to biotech and tech investments in the Silicon Valley area.
Sheikh Abdulla articulated in some detail on the nature of QIA’s investments in the United States. QIA has typically prioritized investments in the real estate sector, while maintaining a presence in residential real estate, industry, alternative energy, and technology. Recently, QIA has also extended its portfolio to healthcare. QIA is currently seeking to move beyond the United States’ population hubs on the East and West coasts, researching upwards of ten cities for investment opportunities across the Midwest.
In response to a question, QIA’s CEO noted that Qatar Petroleum takes the lead in energy investments but that QIA will partner with QP on downstream industrial investments should opportunity present itself. QIA prefers to invest as a minority partner to well-established development and investment firms. For practical management reasons, QIA prefers investment proposals in excess of $50 million.
Sheikh Abdulla made clear that current diplomatic turmoil will not affect QIA’s investments in a friendly country like the United States with which Qatar enjoys such close ties. Qatar and QIA are open for business and the US ranks amongst their highest priorities.
“The USQBC thanks Sheikh Abdulla for reaching out and giving our member companies the opportunity to learn more about Qatar’s investment strategy. These roundtables are critical to enhancing the bilateral relationship and provide our membership with a unique opportunity to learn more about Qatar’s economy and bilateral business.” said Ambassador Patrick N. Theros, President of the US-Qatar Business Council.