Qatar finance minister arrested over alleged embezzlement

Ali Sherif Al Emadi. — AP file
Ali Sherif Al Emadi. — AP file

Ali Sherif Al Emadi is being investigated over allegations of embezzlement, abuse of power and crimes related to the public sector



By Reuters

Published: Thu 6 May 2021, 5:14 PM

Qatar Finance Minister Ali Sherif Al Emadi was arrested for questioning over allegations of embezzlement, abuse of power and crimes related to the public sector, a statement carried by state news agency QNA said on Thursday.

An investigation is under way, the statement added.

“After reviewing documents, and their attached reports, the Attorney-General ordered the arrest of the Minister of Finance Ali Sharif Al Emadi to investigate what was mentioned in the reports of crimes related to practising public office,” a tweet by Qatar News agency said.

Emadi has been minister of finance since 2013 and sits on the board of the country’s $300 billion sovereign wealth fund, the Qatar Investment Authority.

He is also chairman of the board of directors of Qatar National Bank.

Emadi steered Qatar’s economic policies during the 2014-2015 oil price crash that prompted the tiny nation to accelerate plans to diversify the economy.

Qatar, a leading producer of liquefied natural gas, saw its economy shrink by 3.7 per cent last year due to the coronavirus crisis and lower global energy demand.

Emadi was named as 2020’s best minister in the region by The Banker, an international financial magazine that organises an annual celebration of finance ministers.

Qatar, which next year will host the soccer World Cup, has invested heavily in infrastructure over the past few years ahead of the event, which means spending on major projects is set to decrease this year, the finance ministry has said.


More news from Gulf