QNB Group, the largest financial institution in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region, has reported a 7% jump year-on-year in net profit to QR6.7bn in the first half of this year.
The January-June earnings performance reflects the lender’s success in resilience and maintaining strong growth while controlling costs.
Total assets expanded 11% to QR768bn, the highest ever achieved by the group, a bank spokesman yesterday said after the board meeting. The asset growth was driven by an 11% increase in loans and advances to QR552bn.
QNB Group was successful in attracting new customer deposits, which grew 15% to QR562bn, which led to its loan-to-deposit ratio reach 98.3% compared to 101.7% in the comparable period of 2016.
“This clearly demonstrates the success of QNB’s strategy to diversify its funding sources,” the spokesman said.
The prudent cost control policy and strong revenue generating capability helped QNB improve the efficiency ratio (cost-to-income ratio) to 29.3% at the end of June 30, 2017, which is considered one of the best ratios among financial institutions in the region. In the previous year period, the efficiency ratio stood at 30.4%.
The group was able to maintain the ratio of non-performing loans to gross loans at 1.8%, a level considered one of the lowest amongst financial institutional in the MEA region, reflecting the high quality of its loan book and the effective management of credit risk.
The conservative policy in regard to provisioning continued with the coverage ratio reaching 110% at the end of June 30, 2017.
QNB, which benefits from a highly diversified international and local funding base spread across MEA, Europe and Asia, has diversified its wholesale funding pools in terms of currencies, tenors and product mix and follows a very conservative approach to manage its liquidity needs.
Based on this, the bank decreased its loans-to-deposit ratio to 98.3% in the review period compared to 101.7% in January-June 2016 and improved liquid assets, which comprise cash and cash equivalents to QR65bn or 8% of total assets.
Capital adequacy ratio stood at 15.6% at the end of June 30, 2017, which is higher than the regulatory minimum requirements of the Qatar Central Bank and the Basel Committee.
“The group is keen to maintain a strong capitalisation in order to support future growth targets,” the spokesman said.
Total equity increased 1% year-on-year to QR74bn during January-June this year. Earnings-per-share stood at QR7 against QR6.7 in the corresponding period of 2016.
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