The Qatar Financial Centre (QFC) announced the recent introduction of legislation to allow Investment Clubs and Foundations to be set-up under its umbrella.

The initiative aims to contribute to the CEO Yousuf Mohamed Al-Jaida’s recent announcement of the QFC’s 5-year roadmap that aims to attract 1,000 firms and create 10,000 jobs by 2022. The two new structures are QFC’s latest addition to its broad range of permitted activities and designed to facilitate the high net-worth segment of the market.

QFC Authority Chief Legal Officer Nasser Al-Taweel said that allowing investment clubs and foundations to be licensed under the QFC Authority is proof that they continuously strive to widen their platform to appeal to a broader range of activities and legal entities.

It is also consistent with our mandate of contributing to Qatar’s drive towards economic development and diversification in line with Qatar National Vision 2030. The initiatives are expected to contribute to increased savings and investments in Qatar.’

Foundations will be established under QFC Foundation Regulations and Rules, and will have the capacity rights and privileges of a natural person. The Foundation structure is extremely flexible and can be used for succession planning, asset protection and even employee share plans. The constitution of a Foundation needs to be provided to the QFC Authority but remains a confidential document.

Investment Clubs on the other hand, will be companies limited by shares, incorporated under the QFC Investment Clubs Regulations and Rules. As long as the business of the Investment Club is not carried on ‘by way of business’, it will not be a business requiring authorisation from the QFC Regulatory Authority. The main activities of an investment club are for the pooling of funds by up to 15 members and investing in a portfolio of assets and securities. In certain circumstances, a member can exit by selling his shares back to the Investment Club. The regulations also provide for a method to value the assets of the Investment Club and for resolving disputes over valuations.

Nasser said he is confident that both activities will be well received locally and regionally.

Foundations and Investment Clubs set-up under the QFC – like all other QFC licensed entities – can be 100% foreign owned and can trade in the currency of their choice. They may also benefit from unlimited repatriation of profits.

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