The Qatar Financial Centre (QFC), one of the world's leading and fastest growing onshore business and financial centres, in partnership with the International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA), held a conference on the process of setting up special purpose companies (SPC) on its platform.
The conference comes in light of the QFC's recognition by ISDA as an effective netting regime in July 2018, as well as ISDA's publication of a positive legal opinion to its members that identifies the QFC as a netting friendly jurisdiction. The legal opinion confirms that financial netting arrangements under the ISDA Master Agreements are enforceable in the QFC.
Key speakers at the conference included Henk Jan Hoogendoorn, Managing Director, Financial Sector Office, QFC; Dr. Peter Werner, Senior Counsel, ISDA; Habib Motani, Partner, Clifford Chance London; and Ishaq Burney, General Counsel, QFC. The event discussions focused on SPC regulations and highlighted the simple and streamlined process for setting up SPCs with the QFC, which includes submitting a business case to the QFC, followed by a completed application after which businesses can receive their licence and begin operations.
Henk Jan Hoogendoorn, Managing Director, Financial Sector Office, QFC Authority said: "ISDA's recognition of the QFC as an effective netting regime earlier this year was a significant milestone and recognition for Qatar's financial market infrastructure and the world-class legal framework established by the QFC."
Hoogendoorn added: We are committed to ensuring that establishing special purpose companies on the Qatar Financial Centre platform is a seamless experience and look forward to working closely with all businesses interested in utilising our unique and highly beneficial structure."
The QFC is an onshore jurisdiction, allowing companies to operate in and from Qatar within the QFC legal and tax environment. The QFC endeavours to promote Qatar as an attractive business destination. Companies that wish to establish a business in the QFC are guided throughout by a dedicated QFC relationship manager who assists in the process of obtaining a licence and offers support in matters related to operating a business in Qatar. QFC firms enjoy competitive benefits, such as working within a legal environment based on English common law, the right to trade in any currency, up to 100% foreign ownership, 100% repatriation of profits, 10% corporate tax on locally sourced profits, and an extensive double tax treaty agreement network with 60+ countries.
In addition, the independent Employment Standards Office of the QFC embodies a unique Administrative Employment Dispute Resolution Centre accredited by the International Labour Organization (ILO), providing conciliation and adjudication services free of charge to help resolve workplace conflicts. The ESO is fully aligned with the Qatar National Vision 2030 and aspires to promote international best practices in the field of human capital.