Qatar Central Bank promotes online services; Awqaf launches new website

The Qatar Central Bank (QCB) is keeping its commitment to the Qatar National Vision 2030 by facilitating electronic payment services along with other conveniences for merchants and commercial institutions. In particular, it has issued a directive to all banks to set a standard to reduce fees that are being charged to micro-companies that distribute food.

This also includes private fuel stations according to a circular that was published on the QCB’s official Twitter account. With food commodities and private fuel stations, all banks must provide a Point of Sale (POS) service that makes use of a QR code at merchants. This will also help facilitate payment for non-bank customers who wish to complete their purchases.

In line with this, the QCB also stresses its directives for the Qatar National Vision 2030 by making sure that payment services for various users are flexible and are done smoothly. This ensures that electronic payment services are effective and can help reach their goals for the National VIsion, as well as improve the performance of the banking sector in Qatar. This will encourage people to use electronic services and can eventually lead the way to a non-monetary society. This also helps to support economic integration, as well as boosts participation from the private sector.

Speaking of electronic services, the General Directorate of Endowments at the Ministry of Endowments (Awqaf) and Islamic Affairs has also launched a new app and website. The director-general of the General Directorate of Endowments, Sheikh Dr Khalid bin Mohamed bin Ghanem al-Thani, was present at the official launch. Services include endowment, writing a will, reviewing endowment fatwas and so much more.

In other news, the European Commission (EC) has included Qatar on the list that is exempt from the Schengen visa. According to high representative/vice-president Josep Borrell, “Our proposal to lift visa requirements for Qatari and Kuwaiti nationals is a first step to make it easier for people from the entire region to travel to the European Union. The final objective is to ensure regional coherence and ultimately achieve visa free travel for all Gulf Cooperation Council countries. Together with our upcoming Joint Communication on the Gulf, this proposal will reinforce the overall partnership and strengthen the cooperation between the EU and the Gulf Cooperation Council.”

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