REFILE-UPDATE 1-Commercial Bank of Qatar profit beats forecasts

Wed Apr 17, 2013 9:48am EDT

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DOHA, April 17 (Reuters) - Commercial Bank of Qatar beat analysts' forecasts with a seven percent rise in quarterly profit as the Gulf Arab state's third-largest lender presses ahead with its international expansion.

The bank - which is buying a majority stake in Turkey's Alternatifbank as it seeks lending opportunities outside the tiny, gas-rich state - cited growth in lending to the commercial, real estate and services sectors.

Chairman Abdullah Bin Khalifa Al Attiyah said in a statement that the bank will develop its international alliance businesses in Oman and in the United Arab Emirates, alongside the Turkish foray.

The bank earned a net profit of 506 million riyals ($139.0 million) for the first quarter, compared with 471 million riyals last year.

Analysts had forecast an average quarterly profit of 469.17 million riyals, according to a Reuters poll.

Earlier on Wednesday Qatar's Doha Bank reported a first quarter net profit of 395 million riyals compared to 390 million riyals for the year-ago period.

Doha Bank, Qatar's fifth-largest bank, aims to increase its share of profits from overseas business to 15 percent from 8 percent currently, its chief said earlier this month. ($1 = 3.6404 Qatar riyals) (Reporting By Regan Doherty; Editing by Louise Heavens)

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