The next hub of Islamic finance?

Source: Middle East Eye

“When you look at global finance, [Islamic finance] is a very, very high growth area and for Toronto, as an international financial centre, it should be a table-stake for us,” said Janet Ecker, president and CEO of the Toronto Financial Services Alliance (TFSA). Islamic finance is a socially responsible financial system that emerged in the 1970s and uses Islamic law (sharia) to regulate various sectors, including banking...

Second Islamic finance expert to take senior role in Turkish central bank

Source: Reuters

Erkan Kilimci is due to be named as one of the bank's four deputy governors shortly, the officials said, declining to be identified because the information has not yet been made public. One of the deputy governor positions was vacated last week when Murat Cetinkaya was promoted to governor, replacing Erdem Basci whose five-year term had ended. Another deputy governor, Turalay Kenc, is serving the last day of his five-year tenure on Friday...

Islamic finance innovators called to Kuala Lumpur

Source: Gulf Times

The upcoming Global Islamic Finance Forum 2016 to be held in Malaysia’s capital Kuala Lumpur from May 10 to 12 – one of the most renowned global events in the sector – will see a special competition for financial technology, the Asean Fintech Challenge organised by credit card company Visa and the Association of Islamic Banking Institutions Malaysia, or AIBIM, one of the first of its kind in the Islamic finance world...

EThis Targets S$1 Million

Source: Crowd Funders

EthisCrowd.com claims the title of the world’s first real estate Islamic crowdfunding platform. Based in Singapore, Ethis focuses on crowd-investment in social impact developments especially affordable housing and Waqaf, and has already funded projects in Indonesia and Malaysia. Organized by the Association of Islamic Banking Institutions Malaysia (AIBIM), GIFF is in its 5th iteration...

Islamic finance needs to be relevant and responsive

Source: Gulf News

The past is no guarantee for the future — so we have to prepare ourselves for the unprecedented and the unexpected. Islamic finance needs to be relevant and respond to its external operating environment. There are some paradigms that are shifting before us, which we need to understand and be prepared for as practitioners, institutions and jurisdictions. Here I would like to call out three global mega trends that are shaping the world as we know it...

Gold Standard in Islamic Finance

Source: Bloomberg

“We are almost there” with a final proposal, said Mohd Daud Bakar, a Shariah scholar who is writing the draft for the Accounting and Auditing Organisation for Islamic Financial Institutions, the Bahrain-based industry group that sets Shariah standards in finance. The committee formed to develop the gold standard will meet once more next Sunday and then submit the proposal to AAOIFI’s Shariah Board, he said in an interview in Dubai on Sunday...

Islamic financing increases for infrastructure deals

Source: Express Tribune

Shariah-compliant financing is emerging as a viable alternative to conventional banking in order to fund infrastructure deals, which could help promote use of longer-term transactions in Islamic finance. Islamic deals are backed by specific assets, which makes them convenient for infrastructure projects. But traditionally, Islamic bonds and loans have shorter tenors – often around five years – than their conventional equivalents...

As 'interest' grows, quality textbooks needed on Islamic banking

Source: Express Tribune

With the emerging academic and professional interest in Islamic banking and finance in Pakistan, there is a dire need for quality textbooks in the field. Three new centres of excellence in Islamic finance have recently been set up by Institute of Business Administration (IBA) Karachi, Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) and Institute of Management Sciences (IMS) Peshawar...

Bank Alfalah launches book on Islamic finance

Source: Daily Times

Dr Bakar is Malaysia’s leading scholar who currently serves as Chairman of the Shariah Advisory Council at the Central Bank of Malaysia, the Securities Commission of Malaysia, Labuan Financial Services Authority and the International Islamic Liquidity Management Corporation (IILM). He is also a Shariah board member of various financial institutions including the National Bank of Oman (Oman), Noor Islamic Bank (Dubai)...

Islamic finance promotes moderation

Source: The Star

Malaysia has successfully developed a conducive and comprehensive environment for Islamic finance, with continuous product innovation, a large presence of both local and foreign financial institutions, a wide variety of innovative syariah-compliant instruments, an advanced financial infrastructure and a robust legal and regulatory framework that adopts global standards and international best practices...

Are Islamic banks really interest-free?

Source: Asia Investors

The operations of Islamic banks, unlike conventional banks, are supposedly based on the premise of justice and fairness and not just maximising profits. The advocates of Islamic banking are convinced of its advantages and the contributions it makes to society compared to conventional banking (Sugema, Bakhtiar and Effendi, 2010; Khairul, Shamsher and Eskandar (2014))...

Islamic Finance To Help In Attaining SDGS

Source: Pak Observer

Islamic finance could contribute to meeting some of the sustainable development goals adopted by the UN General Assembly under its 2030 agenda, said Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services in a report titled “Islamic Finance Could Aid Modestly In Achieving Sustainable Development Goals.” Agreed on in September 2015, the UN General Assembly set 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) and 169 measurable targets centered on five pillars...

A new day for Islamic finance in Iran

Source: Zawya

An often-ignored area within Islamic finance is the establishment of an inclusive national interest-free banking system in Iran. The core of Islamic finance around the world is associated with the ban on the payment of certain types of interest. Somehow in this case Iranian banks still effectively use interest-based transactions and retain the accounting standards of conventional banking...

Islamic finance assets estimated at $2.1T in 2016

Source: Al Bawaba

"We estimate Islamic finance assets were worth about $2.1 trillion at year-end 2015, compared with more than $7 trillion of cumulative GDP of the economies of the OIC countries at the same date," the ratings agency said in a report on Monday. It said that Islamic finance could contribute to meeting some of the sustainable development goals adopted by the UN General Assembly under its 2030 agenda...

Islamic finance could help in meeting sustainable development goals

Source: CPI Financial

Agreed on in September 2015, the UN General Assembly set 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) and 169 measurable targets centred on five pillars: people, planet, prosperity, peace, and partnership. The UN has stressed that striving for sustainable development will require a revitalised global partnership between all stakeholders "Islamic finance could play a role--a modest one at least--in meeting some of the SDGs...

Uganda to host Islamic finance convention

Source: Business Week

There are two basic principles behind Islamic banking. The sharing of profit and loss and, significantly, the prohibition of the collection and payment of interest. to a statement, the purpose of the Convention is to create a strong platform for the growth of the industry that will not only help to establish Uganda as an exciting investment destination but also attract the support and enable the development of the broader Sub-Saharan market...

Impact of Fintech to Islamic finance

Source: Islamic Finance

Fintech has been a favourite topic at Islamic finance forums lately. It was the focus at the World Islamic Banking Conference 2015 held in Manama, Bahrain, in December 2015. The topic also made its rounds at the Euromoney Islamic Finance and Investment Conference (February 2016, London, UK), Islamic Finance Conference 2016 (March 2016, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) and Islamic Banking & Investment Asia/Middle East Congress...

New framework needed for Islamic finance

Source: Business Mirror

With the proposed Bangsamoro basic law (BBL) appearing dead in the water, the government needs to find another legal framework to encourage the growth of Islamic banking. The BBL would have provided the framework that would encourage the growth of Islamic banking in the country by providing the proposed Bangsamoro government with authority and jurisdiction in promoting Islamic banking, subject to the supervision...

13th Islamic Financial Stability Forum on Consumer Protection in Islamic Finance

Source: Zawya

The theme of Forum was Consumer Protection in Islamic Finance, and the main presentation was by Professor Volker Nienhaus, Former President, University of Marburg, Germany, and IFSB Consultant. Ms. Nariman Abdulla Kamber Al Awadhi, Chief Manager, Consumer Protection Unit, Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates and Mr. Khairul Nizam, Chief Operating Officer, Finance Accreditation Agency, Malaysia, acted as discussants to the presentation...

Islamic banks hope to attract Mauritania's deposit-wary consumers

Source: Financial Times

Mauritania is turning to Islamic finance to modernise its banking sector, trying to raise the number of people with accounts from its meagre levels today and in turn increase liquidity so banks can lend more to companies. Many of the Islamic republic’s citizens are uncomfortable with western banking, opting for informal banking collectives or just “keeping money under the bed”, says one local banking executive...

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