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Qatar Investment Authority Has $30 Billion to Invest in 2012

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April 22 (Bloomberg) -- Qatar Investment Authority, the Gulf Arab country’s sovereign wealth fund, has $30 billion to invest this year, board member Hussain Al Abdulla said.

“We don’t have any geographic allocation or asset allocation or currency allocation,” he said at a conference in the country’s capital, Doha. “We are very much opportunistic.”

Qatar, holder of the world’s third-largest natural gas reserves, is seeking to diversify its economy by investing in companies, industrial projects and real estate abroad. The Qatar Investment Authority, or QIA, has “much more” than $100 billion of assets, Al Abdulla said today.

Qatar Holding LLC, the fund’s foreign investment arm, has acquired a 3 percent stake in Total SA, Europe’s third-largest oil company, Chief Executive Officer Ahmad Al-Sayad said today. It’s also a shareholder in Volkswagen AG, Barclays Plc and London’s Harrods Ltd.

The fund is interested in investing in commodities, Al Abdulla said today.

“Because of the financial crises, people are not investing enough in commodities,” he said. “That might create a gap between 2016 and 2017 and might push the price even higher.”

Qatar Holding has increased its stake in the mining group Xstrata Plc to 6 percent, according to regulatory findings. Qatar told Xstrata that it will back the mining company’s planned merger with Glencore International Plc, the Sunday Times reported April 15, without saying where it got the information.

Al Abdulla and Al-Sayad declined to comment on the wealth fund’s interest in Xstrata.

To contact the reporters on this story: Robert Tuttle in Doha at rtuttle@bloomberg.net; Mahmoud Kassem in Cairo at mkassem1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Shaji Mathew at shajimathew@bloomberg.net