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Qatar Says It Has $340 Billion To Withstand Boycott By Arab Nations

Doha

Qatar’s central bank says it has $340 billion in reserves that could help the country to withstand any effects from the boycott imposed by its Arab neighbors and other countries.

Central bank Governor Sheikh Abdullah Bin Saoud al-Thani said in an interview with CNBC published on July 10 that this shows “the credibility of our system.”

“We have enough cash to preserve any -- any -- kind of shock," he said.

Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, and Egypt broke diplomatic and travel ties with Qatar over the emirate's alleged financial support for Islamist extremists and its ties to regional rival Iran.

The four countries set a list of 13 demands and threatened further sanctions against Qatar if it did not act.

Among the demands were calls to end financial support for terrorism, shutter the Al-Jazeera network, cut most ties with Iran, and close Turkey's air base in the Gulf country.

The Qataris have denied the allegations.

Al-Thani said the central bank has $40 billion in reserves plus gold, while the Qatar Investment Authority, the country’s sovereign wealth fund, has $300 billion in reserves that it could liquidate.

Al-Thani denied the country’s finances had links to extremist activities.

"We're not guilty," he said. "We have no challenges. We welcome those to review all our books, they are open."

“We have laws established against all these kinds of terrorists," he added. "We work with the IMF [International Monetary Fund] and other institutions to establish our laws and audits and reviews."

By RFE/RL

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