Qatar uses a riyal and dirham system of decimal currency. There are 100 dirhams to one riyal.
Notes are in denominations of 500, 100, 50, 10, and 1 riyal/s.
Coins are in denominations of 50, 25, 10, 5 and 1 dirham/s.
One Qatari Riyal is roughly equivalent to:
- £0.21 (UK Pound)
- €0.24 (Euro)
- $0.27 (US Dollar)
- 19.60 (Indian Rupee)
- ¥1.86 (Chinese Yuan)
Applying for a Bank Account
Qatar offers a mixture of both local and international banks. All major Qatari banks are well-regulated and offer a range of services to Qatari nationals and expatriates alike. Interest rates and charges can vary, so it is wise to compare banks before opening an account.
To open an account, you will need to apply in person at a branch of your choice. In addition to holding a valid residence permit, you must submit a photocopy of your passport, your residence visa, and two passport photographs. You will also require a letter from your employer detailing your salary and when payments will be made into your account each month (otherwise known as a ‘no objection letter’).
Once your application has been processed, you will be issued with a debit and/or credit card and have access to the bank’s range of services. Prior to receiving your card, you may use an internationally recognised credit card, many of which are accepted in Qatar.
There is no personal income tax, value-added tax, sales tax or capital/wealth tax in Qatar.
Taxes payable in Qatar include:
- Corporation tax, applied to foreign companies
- Import duties, charged at four per cent on the most valuable item
- Service tax, charged at 10 per cent
- Government levy, charged at five per cent on restaurant and hotel bills
It is worth noting that self-employed foreign workers may be taxed on their income. Expatriates may also be liable to pay tax in their home country depending on their personal circumstances and home country taxations laws. Therefore, it is recommended that expatriates seek advice on the relative tax situation in their home country.
Retirement and Pensions
The retirement age for workers in the public sector is 60. However, there is no retirement age for those working in the private sector, allowing expatriates to carry on working well into their 60s and 70s. It is worth noting that foreign workers are required to renew their working visa should they wish to remain in employment beyond the age of 60.
Foreign workers are not entitled to a pension from the Qatari government and must manage their own funds for use in later life.