Factbox: Qatar's sovereign fund plays key anchor role during Gulf rift

(Reuters) - The Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), the world’s ninth largest sovereign wealth fund, is playing a key role in helping Qatar’s financial sector withstand the effects of an economic boycott by its powerful Arab neighbours.

With an estimated $342 billion in assets, according to the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute, QIA began operations in 2005, initially holding stakes in Qatari companies before entering the limelight with global investments in Total TOTF.PA, Credit Suisse CSGN.S and Harrods department store. (

QIA does not disclose the size of its assets, but says it invests in listed and unlisted equities, and assets including but not limited to commodities and precious metals, credit and fixed income securities, cash, foreign currencies and derivatives. (

In March, Qatar pledged 5 billion pounds ($6.3 billion) of investment in Britain in a show of support for the world’s fifth-largest economy.

In recent weeks QIA made U.S. dollar deposits in some local banks as a precaution after Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states cut diplomatic and transport ties with Doha, Reuters reported on June 20 citing Qatari commercial bankers.

Reporting by Saeed Azhar, Claire Milhench and Patturaja Murugaboopath