Qatar in investment with Barclays' resource unit

Qatar has signed a deal to co-invest $250m (£153m) with Barclays' natural resources private equity investment unit, underlining the gas-rich Gulf state's desire to plough some of its commodity wealth back into the sector.

The investments in Barclays Natural Resources Investments' portfolio companies will be done through Qatar Asset Management Company, a joint venture between the gas-rich Gulf state's sovereign wealth fund and the Qatar Financial Centre.

It cements the relationship Barclays has with Qatar, which through its sovereign fund, was one of the top three shareholders in the British lender as at the end of last year, with a 6.8 per cent stake.

Reuters had reported earlier in the day that Qatar and Barclays were set to unveil an asset management transaction.

The Qatar Financial Centre provides a platform for financial services, focusing on reinsurance and asset management, and has been positioned as the gas-rich Gulf state's answer to glitzier Dubai's financial centre.

"Our objective for 2020 is that the amount of assets under management in Qatar will be between $150 and $200bn," Abdulrahman Ahmad al-Shaibi, board member and managing director, Qatar Financial Centre Authority said at a conference to unveil the Barclays resources investment.

The investment is consistent with Qatar's penchant of investing its commodity wealth in the broader commodities sector.