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Best Online Banks in Qatar

From 2017 to 2021, Qatar’s neighbors have put a diplomatic and economic blockade on it. But it looks like the blockade may have had the opposite effect and made Qatar more economically independent than ever before.

After the blockade was put in place, Qatar was put under pressure to quickly find other ways to get supplies, increase its own production, and grow its new seaport. Many goods and services that had been brought in before had to be made in the country, and fast.

But Qatar still seems to be behind when it comes to digital banking. Yes, traditional banks have started offering mobile and online banking. However, without proper competition from fintech companies, traditional banks lack many features that people in developed countries take for granted.

Qatar economy needs the best online banks in Qatar to challenge the status quo.


The number of smartphones in Qatar

There are a lot of smartphones in Qatar (75%). That’s almost as much as the United States and Germany, and a lot more than China, Iran, Japan, and many other countries.

Qatar has the youngest population in the world, with more than half of its people under the age of 25. This shouldn’t be a surprise.

Google Pay and Apple Pay are widely used to pay for things, just like they are in many other countries. Traditional banks also offer mobile banking.

Digital Banking Licensing

Investment, finance, and banking have all changed a lot because of technology.

New fintech business models have shown that they have a lot of potential to improve how well financial services work, but they also make things harder for regulators and give them more work to do.

Due to their technical knowledge and flexibility, fintech-led digital banks have become a major competitor to traditional banks. This is one reason why traditional banks have started investing a lot in technology to improve their operations and give customers better benefits.

In spite of what we just said, Qatar still doesn’t have any digital banks. Instead, traditional banks that are already on the market offer online and mobile banking. If this keeps up, the United States will fall even further behind the rest of the world in this area. Qatar economy needs the best online banks in Qatar to challenge the status quo.

When regulators aren’t keeping up with technology, the sector and the economy as a whole start to suffer.

Sheikh Abdulla Bin Saud Al-Thani, the Governor of QCB, said that they are “fully aware of the importance of financial technology in the development of the country’s banking and financial sector.”

But since that was said, almost three years have passed and no licenses for digital banks have been given.

It seems that three fintech companies have been working with the central bank in a regulatory sandbox to test out their ideas. It is also being thought about letting other companies join the sandbox.

Benefits of online Banking in Qatar

Compared to traditional banks, online banks have many advantages and benefits. Let’s check out a few of them.


There are a lot of fees at Qatari banks that add up very quickly. Bank accounts are not only another bill you have to pay, but they also don’t offer enough benefits to make up for the huge fees.

On the other hand, most digital banks have low or no fees for monthly account maintenance, most types of transactions, and debit cards.

Traditional banks and online banks are most different when it comes to fees. Traditional banks try to get every last penny out of you by charging a wide range of fees. Best online banks, on the other hand, often don’t even charge fees for basic banking tasks.

Money transfers

The main purpose of online banks and payment apps is to make money transfers easy, quick, and cheap or free. Moving money between people in the same country or between people in different countries can still be slow and expensive.

Thanks to digital banks, it’s easy to send money across the world. Since almost 90% of Qatar’s people are from outside the country, international transfers are very important.

The need for best online banks in Quatar to join.

Traditional Qatari banks make it almost impossible to send money abroad cheaply, so more digital banks will give them the much-needed competition they need to improve their service and drastically lower their prices.

Sign up process

Digital bank accounts are well-known for being easy to open. The whole thing only takes a few minutes and doesn’t require any paperwork. Once digital banks open in Qatar, hopefully the process will be the same and all you’ll need is an ID, address, email address, and phone number.

Budgeting and analytics

The budgeting and analytics tools in digital banks’ apps are another thing that makes them stand out. Not only can you see when and where your money is going in real time, but you can also split your money into sub-accounts to make budgeting easy.

You can put money into different pots and label them with words like rent, bills, groceries, restaurants, car, or anything else you want. Set up real-time alerts to know when you’re spending too much and getting close to the limit you set.

Savings interest rates

The interest rates on savings at traditional banks are too low to be worth it. The worst part about these savings accounts isn’t even the low interest rate; it’s that your money is locked away for a certain amount of time.

Putting your money away for a couple of years at an interest rate of less than 1% is not a good way to manage your money because the money won’t be working for you.

Traditional banks don’t offer higher interest rates because they don’t need your money that much. They have a lot of money and don’t really care about what you put in because they can get a lot of money for free right now.

Online banks, on the other hand, do need your money and deposits because they can show investors that they are confident in themselves and their business model by showing these numbers. The best online banks in Qatar are so much needed. 

Qatar’s Concerns with Digital Banking

There are many pros to digital banks, but there are also some cons. “Concerns about privacy, competition, and market monopolies,” says the Qatar Central Bank, “may pose threats to the financial system.”

This has made the regulators and people in charge of keeping an eye on things rethink the rules. But that’s not all.

They are rethinking their strategy for supervision and oversight because, from their point of view, the solutions offered by fintech companies may increase operational and cybersecurity risks because of how they use IT.

Since Qatar has some tough neighbors, these worries may be well-founded.

The Qatar Central Bank emphasized that the future of the banking sector may raise concerns about:

  • Protecting and managing data,
  • Protecting privacy,
  • Protecting the confidentiality of transactions,
  • Protecting cyber security

For those reasons, the regulatory and supervisory bodies need to:

Get specialized skills and people to deal with the huge changes and innovations in digital finance technology.
Consider financial technology and compliance provisions when making decisions and giving regulatory and supervisory instructions.
Monitor their implementations.

Conclusion – Qatar needs online banking

Qatar has one of the world’s richest economies. It is in the top ten richest countries. In spite of sanctions from Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Egypt, the country’s economy has grown.

The economy of Qatar is still based on oil and natural gas. These two natural resources bring in more than 70% of all government income, more than 60% of the gross domestic product, and about 85% of the money made from exports.

Qatar still hasn’t diversified its economy as much as Dubai has. In the not-too-distant future, this could be a problem.

Qatar economy needs the best online banks in Qatar to challenge the status quo.

Qatar National Vision 2030 is a plan for development that was started by the government of Qatar in October 2008.

Its goal is to “make Qatar a more advanced society that can develop in a way that is sustainable.” The goals of the plan are based on four main points:

Economic, Social, Human, and Environmental development.

Within this plan, the QCB is getting ready to announce its financial technology strategy, which includes issuing licenses for digital banks and even looking into the possibility of starting a digital currency.

Qatar, its economy, and its people will all be better off if this happens as soon as possible.

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