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Bankers urge Islamic banks to develop their own financial reporting standard

Posted on 15 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Central banks of the Islamic countries have been urged to adopt a separate set of regulation including a complete new Islamic Financial Reporting Standard to reduce confusion among Muslim scholars, Islamic bankers said.
They have also urged the regulators to develop an Islamic Inter-bank offered profit rate — to benchmark their rates and reduce dependence of the conventional interbank offered interest rates…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sharjah Islamic Bank launches ‘Zone’ package for companies in Al Hamriya Free Zone

Posted on 15 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Sharjah Islamic Bank (SIB), in collaboration with the Al Hamriyah Free Zone Authority-Sharjah, has launched its latest banking programme, the ‘Zone’ package for companies registered in Al Hamriyah Free Zone in Sharjah, to facilitate and further ease banking procedures and transactions for companies and investors while enabling them to access exceptional services.
The new package enables new customers to obtain a book of 50 vouchers that allows registered companies and investors in the Al Hamriya Free Zone to make use of a number of free banking services, including postponed cheque depositing, ‘Cheque collection’, ‘Swift’ transfers, issuance of Watani Prepaid Cards, issuance of banking cheques and two cheque books, among other privileges. (Press Release)

Noor Islamic Bank launches reality mobile banking app

Posted on 15 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Noor Islamic Bank (Noor)’s augmented reality ‘Bank in Your Hand’ smartphone and tablet application is now available for download from Apple’s App Store, the banks announced in a press reealse. Work is also in progress on adapting the app to other smart phone platforms, it said.
“A first-of-its-kind in the Middle East,Noor Appenables customers to access Noor’s full range of products and services, including instant mobile-to-mobile payments between Noor clients, personalized financial analytics, account opening, ATM and branch locator using maps with augmented reality features, transferring money locally or internationally, and paying credit card and utility bills,” said the press release…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Global Islamic banking valued at US$1.5 trillion at end-March: El-Beltagy

Posted on 14 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Chairman of Egyptian Islamic Finance Association, Dr. Mohamed El-Beltagy, has revealed that the volume of global Islamic banking has reached US$ 1.500 trillion at the end of last March, citing statistics from international financial institutions.
El-Beltagy expected Islamic banking to significantly grow in the upcoming period as many countries have started to invest in Sharia-compliant financial instruments such as sukuk (Islamic bonds). The Egyptian Islamic Finance Association will organize a conference next month to discuss sukuk applications after approving the law and setting the executive regulation, he told Amwal Al Ghad………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Turkey: New Islamic banks ready to open soon

Posted on 14 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Turkey has begun to open the doors to giving new banking licenses after the 2001 banking crisis, with no exception for interest-free Islamic banks, called participation banks.
Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan said at the Turkish Participation Banks Union’s annual meeting that it appeared the format of two participation banks would be clearer in a few months. The state-run banks, Ziraat Bank and Halkbank, will establish these two participation banks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Mauritanian gets new Islamic bank

Posted on 14 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

A new financial institution, Mouamalat Assahiha Bank, has been established in Mauritania to operate exclusively according to the Islamic finance code. “The new bank, with a US$20 billion capital, was set by young and successful Mauritanian business people,’ according to a statement from the bank.
The bank will target both individuals and corporate organisations, and base its operations on the highest ethics and standards of the country’s financial industry………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Islamic banking needs separate regulations and reporting standard

Posted on 14 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Central banks of the Islamic countries have been urged to adopt a separate set of regulation including a complete new Islamic Financial Reporting Standard to reduce confusion among Muslim scholars, Islamic bankers said at a two-day conference.
They have also urged the regulators to develop an Islamic Inter-bank offered profit rate — to benchmark their rates and reduce dependence of the conventional interbank offered interest rates………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Major Libyan bank fully integrates into Islamic banking system

Posted on 14 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Libya’s second major bank Gumhouria Bank, decided to fully move over to the Islamic banking system, Al Jazeera TV channel reported on Wednesday.
According to the report, the bank plans to completely switch to the Islamic banking system within two years, as well as transfer all its branches to the new system. As the TV channel reported, Libya’s goal is to turn the country into the centre of Islamic banking for African countries, particularly in the Muslim and Arab ones………………………………………..Full Article: Source

India: RBI will not oppose, if govt allows Islamic Banking

Posted on 10 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Governor Reserve Bank of India (RBI), Dr D. Subbarao today said RBI will not create any huddle, if Government of India allows Islamic Banking in the country. Addressing a press conference here, after the conclusion of Central Board of Directors (CBD) meeting, the RBI Governor said that different Banks operating in the state will increase their Credit Deposit Ratio (CDR) from existing 36.5 percent to 40 percent so that more loans would be given to the people who require it.
“Let me clear to you. It is not RBI, which is standing in the way of starting of Islamic Banking in the country. It is the government which has to determine, whether to allow the Islamic Banking or not,” he said…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Islamic banking not consistent with existing laws: Reserve Bank

Posted on 10 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Reserve Bank said Islamic banking is not consistent with current banking laws in India. “We got to see that Islamic Banking which does not allow charging interest or taking of interest is inconsistent with our existing laws… All that I am saying is Islamic banking is not consistent with current banking laws,” RBI Governor D Subbarao said after the board meeting.
Charging of interest is necessary to conduct banking operation in India because banks have to borrow on which it has to pay interest rate, he said, adding banks have to deposit excess cash with the Reserve Bank on which they get interest…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Thailand: Finance Min injects 6 bln baht to support Islamic Bank

Posted on 10 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Finance Ministry has approved a 6-billion-baht fund for recapitalization of the Islamic Bank of Thailand, of which the ministry is the major shareholder.
According to the Islamic Bank managing director, the Finance Ministry has given the green light to a project aimed at reviving the bank after it has been plagued by the problem of non-performing loans (NPLs). Out of the 6-billion-baht rehabilitation fund, 3 billion will come from the ministry itself, and the rest from the Government Savings Bank and the Krung Thai Bank, which are shareholders of the Islamic Bank…………………………………….Full Article: Source

INCEIF partners Bank Nizwa in Oman

Posted on 10 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The International Centre for Education in Islamic Finance (INCEIF) has joined hands with Oman’s first dedicated Islamic bank, Bank Nizwa, to provide structured training and development initiatives for Omani nationals working in the Islamic finance industry.
In a statement Thursday, INCEIF said the collaboration is in line with Bank Nizwa’s efforts, aimed at aligning itself with the “Employer of Choice” adage by nurturing a work environment that attracts, optimises and retains top talent…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Gulf Finance House reports Q1 2013 profits of $1.5mln

Posted on 10 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Gulf Finance House (GFH), the Bahrain based Islamic investment bank, announced its financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2013 recording another period of sound results and profitability.
GFH reported a net profit of US$1.5 million for the quarter compared with US$ 1 million during the same quarter in previous year, an increase of 50%. Total income for the period was at US$11.1 million compared to US$12.9 million during the first quarter of 2012…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Ajman Bank’s Q1 net profit up 171 pct

Posted on 10 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Ajman Bank posted a profit of AED 12.3 million for the first quarter of 2013, compared to a first quarter 2012 profit of AED. 4.5 million, a 171 per cent increase.
His Highness Sheikh Ammar Bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, Crown Prince of Ajman and Chairman of Ajman Bank, said, “The outstanding results Ajman Bank has achieved demonstrate our clear vision and strategy and the efficiency of our business model. Risk management is embedded at the centre of our business strategy and it has enabled the Bank to position itself appropriately for any upcoming challenges. ……………………………………Full Article: Source

Islamic banking impossible in Indian regulatory set-up: RBI governor

Posted on 09 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

RBI governor D Subbarao on Wednesday said implementing Islamic banking model in India would be impossible because it is inconsistent with the banking regulatory set-up where interest is charged and given. However, he said he has suggested the government that the decision being political, it must debate and, if required, bring in a law.
“It can be a parallel system for which a separate regulatory set-up can be created,” the governor said. “It is a political issue,” he said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Indonesia: Shariah banking market share reaches new height

Posted on 09 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The market share of Islamic lenders in Indonesia during the first quarter of 2013 reached nearly 5 percent for the first time ever, Bank Indonesia said on Wednesday. The market share of Shariah-compliant banks in the first quarter was 4.9 percent, mainly from Rp 214.5 trillion in assets, an increase of 37.8 percent compared to the same period in 2012.
“It is a market share in the Shariah banking industry that has never happened before,” Bank Indonesia Deputy Governor Halim Alamsyah said during his opening speech at a discussion on Islamic banking at the State Enterprises Ministry………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Islamic Development Bank President reiterates support for Somalia

Posted on 09 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The President of the Islamic Development Bank Group, Dr Ahmad Mohamed Ali, in addressing the International Conference on Somalia in London, stressed that the IDB would cooperate with the Government of Somalia in a bid to rebuild and consolidate the public finance institutions through various methods such as staff training and transfer of knowledge and technology from IDB member countries.
Ali stated further that the IDB would assist the Government in the fields of Islamic banking and finance and improve legislation on investment so that the private sector can play its role in economic and social development………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Tanzania: Amana Bank Limited grow stronger

Posted on 09 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Amana Bank Limited, Tanzania’s first fully Sharia compliant bank has announced its audited financial results for the financial year ended 31 December 2012, reflecting strong growth in financing and deposits. This is the bank’s first full year of trading having commenced operations in November 2011. The bank started financing in April 2012 and by December 2012, the bank had disbursed total financing facilities amounting to TZS26 Billion.
The bank recorded TZS1.2 billion income from financing activities and TZS1 billion from non-funded income. The Bank closed the year with total mobilised deposits of TZS 34 billion. Total assets of the bank grew by 100% to TZS52 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Morocco expects $1 bln a year in loans from AfDB in 2013-16

Posted on 09 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Morocco expects to win $1 billion in loans per year from the African Development Bank (AfDB) over the next four years as the country looks to make full use of the bank’s funds, the Moroccan Finance minister said on Wednesday.
Morocco is keen to develop its energy sources and infrastructure, but it logged a budget deficit of 2.2 percent of gross domestic product in the first quarter and is trying to reform its costly system of food and energy subsidies………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Turkey can profit from Islamic banking

Posted on 08 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

As part of an initiative backed by the Islamist government, Ziraat Bank, the country’s largest state-run lender, is working to set up a Shari’ah-compliant entity. It comes less than a year after Ankara’s debut sovereign Sukuk. In a country divided by the role of religion in public life, such an active promotion of Islamic finance would have been tough to imagine when Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan first came to power a decade ago.
But times have changed. Turkey already has four Islamic banks, known locally as participation banks, of which three are foreign-owned. The first was established almost three decades ago………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Legislative amendments on Islamic banking not on CBA agenda

Posted on 08 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Central Bank of Azerbaijan (CBA) does not currently consider amending the domestic legislation to ensure the implementation of Islamic banking in Azerbaijan, CBA Chairman Elman Rustamov said.
Prohibition on charging interest for loans is the major distinction between Islamic and Western-style banking. Instead of interest, Islamic banks take a stake in businesses to which they loan money and share both the profit and loss with the client………………………………………..Full Article: Source

ADIB Group Q1 net profit up 10.7 pct

Posted on 08 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) Group posted a 10.7 per cent increase in net profit of AED 340.1 million for Q1 2013, after taking provisions and impairments of AED 185.5 million.
Net customer financing increased 8.9 per cent to AED 54.0 billion and total assets increased 15.9 per cent to AED 88.7 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Emirates Islamic Bank reports 101pct Q1 profit jump

Posted on 07 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Emirates Islamic Bank (EIB), on Sunday, reported a 101 per cent increase in first quarter net profit as compared to the previous year. The net profit for the period reached Dhs33.2 million, noting a sharp incline from the Dhs16.5 million in the first quarter in 2012. The total income for the three months, that ended March 31, 2013, rose up by 42 per cent to reach Dhs443 million.
The bank reported a 42 per cent increase in operating profit before an impairment of Dhs195 million in the first quarter………………………………………..Full Article: Source

‘Innovation key to growth’ of Islamic banking

Posted on 03 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Oman and Malaysia should embark on joint initiatives to develop a pool of professionals to drive the innovation and growth of the Islamic finance industry, said Raja Nazrin Shah, crown prince of Perak, Malaysia, and financial ambassador of the Malaysian International Islamic Financial Centre.
Shah observed, “There is great potential for the Sultanate of Oman and Malaysia to harness their collective resources and forge a mutually beneficial relationship in these areas. Such collaborative arrangements are critical for spurring further development and innovation and for addressing global issues and challenges facing the Islamic finance industry. A potential area for collaboration is the development of human capital.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

DIB eyes acquisitions in Asian markets

Posted on 03 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB) has dealt with much of its balance sheet weakness and should see profits for 2013 grow in the high double digits, allowing it to eye acquisitions in new markets in Asia, officials said.
Leaders at the world’s oldest sharia-compliant lender told Reuters it had put aside around AED 5 billion ($ 1.36 billion) against the sort of soured property loans and transactions which drew into question Dubai’s future as a financial hub in 2009. In his first media interview since taking over to deal with the fallout of the 2008 global crisis, Chief Executive Abdulla Al-Hamli said the bank was now anxious to expand but was being held back in part by the unrest dominating the Middle East………………………………………..Full Article: Source

National Bank sets up an Islamic banking window

Posted on 03 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

National Bank of Kenya has launched a new Islamic banking window with plans to launch a fully-fledged subsidiary in future. The window, called ‘National Amanah’ is targeted at retail, SME and corporate clients offering banking products and services in compliance with Islamic Shariah.
NBK Managing Director Munir Ahmed said the launch of ‘National Amanah’ was in line with the bank’s continued focus on re-aligning its business in an increasingly competitive environment………………………………………..Full Article: Source

United Arab Bank’s Islamic banking division appoints Minhaj Advisory to be its Shariah consulting arm

Posted on 03 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Islamic Banking Division of United Arab Bank (UAB), the fastest growing bank in the UAE, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Minhaj Advisory - one of the most prominent Shari’ah compliant consultancy in the region.
The services extended by Minhaj Advisory will include introduction of Shari’ah compliant products, contracts, supervision, auditing and training. Minhaj will form a Shari’ah Supervisory Board (SSB) with three reputable Islamic scholars at the helm to extend their guidance regarding provisions and principles of Shari’ah related to transactions and activities of the current and future Islamic products and services provided by UAB’s Islamic banking division………………………………………..Full Article: Source

South Africa’s First National Bank recruits new Shariah advisors

Posted on 03 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Reuters quotes new Islamic Finance Chief Executive Officer Amman Muhammad as saying, “In the new structure, we no longer call them a board, we’re using the term ‘sharia advisory committee’ and we now clearly define what the role of the committee is.”
He also revealed the bank’s plans to rebrand Islamic Finance, “We’re proposing to go to the market at the start of our new financial year with the name FNB Islamic Banking. It’s important for us to build our credibility in South Africa, (while) FNB acts as a conduit between us and other African countries,” he told Reuters………………………………………..Full Article: Source

FNB names new sharia banking advisory committee

Posted on 03 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Islamic division of First National Bank (FNB) has hired a new sharia advisory committee and aims to rebrand itself after a governance crisis last year resulted in the previous board quitting, denting investor confidence.
Under the new structure, the committee will no longer play a role in the day-to-day running of the business, removing the potential for conflicts like those that led to a public spat with management last year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Islamic finance course for QIB staff concludes at QFIS

Posted on 03 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Executive Training Programme for Islamic Banking concluded at Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies (QFIS) recently. The training programme, which aims at developing Islamic finance skills towards better understanding of its principles and products, is specially designed for Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB) finance employees.
The training introduced a comprehensive fundamental perspective about Islamic securitisation, gave tips on how to manage Islamic investment funds and studied their potentials………………………………………..Full Article: Source

UAB signs MoU with Shari’ah compliant consultancy

Posted on 02 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Islamic Banking Division of United Arab Bank (UAB), the fastest growing bank in the UAE, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Minhaj Advisory — one of the most prominent Shari’ah compliant consultancies in the region. The services extended by Minhaj Advisory will include introduction of Shari’ah compliant products, contracts, supervision, auditing and training.
Minhaj will form a Shari’ah Supervisory Board (SSB) with three reputable Islamic scholars at the helm to extend their guidance regarding provisions and principles of Shari’ah related to transactions and activities of the current and future Islamic products and services provided by UAB’s Islamic banking division………………………………………..Full Article: Source

New sharia committee at FNB

Posted on 02 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Islamic division of South Africa’s First National Bank has hired a new sharia advisory committee and aims to rebrand itself after a governance crisis in 2012 saw the previous board quit, denting investor confidence.
Under the new structure, the committee will no longer play a role in the day-to-day running of the business, removing the potential for conflicts like those which led to a public spat with management last year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

United Arab Bank hires Minhaj Advisory for Islamic banking arm

Posted on 02 May 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The services extended by Minhaj Advisory will include introduction of Shari’ah compliant products, contracts, supervision, auditing and training. Minhaj will form a Shari’ah Supervisory Board (SSB) with three Islamic scholars at the helm to extend their guidance regarding provisions and principles of Shari’ah related to transactions and activities of the current and future Islamic products and services provided by UAB’s Islamic banking division.
Sheikh Mohamed Al Nuaimi, Executive Vice-President, United Arab Bank said, “Being the fastest growing bank, we always strive to offer the full range of banking products and services to our valued customers. ……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Islamic Bank of Britain reports 2012 loss of GBP 6.99 mln

Posted on 30 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Islamic Bank of Britain (IBB), the UK’s only wholly Shari’ah-compliant retail bank, reported a loss of GBP 6.99 million for 2012, a GBP 2.01m improvement on 2011 (loss of GBP 9.00m). Operating expenses (excluding restructuring costs) reduced by GBP 0.9m to GBP 9.4m.
Total customer financing increased by 86 per cent to GBP 129m (GBP 69m in 2011) with HPP (home) financing increasing by 92 per cent to GBP 117m (GBP 61m in 2011). Retail deposits increased by 22 per cent to GBP 238m (GBP 195.2m in 2011); and as a result of the internet enhancements delivered in the year, 14 per cent of long term deposits raised in 2012 were sourced from the online channel (2011: nil)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Noor Islamic Bank profit jumps 54pct

Posted on 30 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Noor Islamic Bank on Monday said its net profit rose Dh26.4 million, or 54 per cent, to Dh75.5 million in 2012 year-on-year.Based on the significant progress made in 2012, the shareholders have underlined their confidence in the bank’s future performance, approving a capital injection of Dh150 million. Currently, Noor Islamic Bank’s capital adequacy ratio stands at 19.54 per cent, with the tier-1 ratio at 14.1 per cent.
Hussain Al Qemzi, Chief Executive Officer of Noor Islamic Bank and Group CEO Noor Investment Group, said: “In line with our strategic road map, building a healthy balance sheet and diversifying core revenue generation capabilities remain our key priorities………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Emirates NBD Q1 2013 profits up 31 pct

Posted on 26 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Emirates NBD’s Chief Executive Officer Rick Pudner, said, “Emirates NBD has once again delivered a robust set of results with a net profit of AED 837 million in the first quarter of 2013, up 31 per cent in comparison with the same quarter in the previous year. While the global economic climate continues to remain uncertain, with our strong financial performance, we aim to continue building on our solid foundations to drive the bank forward while achieving our strategic objectives.”
Emirates NBD’s Chief Financial Officer Surya Subramanian, said, “Pre-provision operating profit, a core strength for the bank, shows signs of growth after a few resilient quarters last year. The Retail business and Islamic franchise have been a key driver for this growth. Our balance sheet is well managed and we continue to de-risk the book.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Bank Dhofar Q1 net profit OMR 32.44 mln, up 253 pct

Posted on 26 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Operating income was up 7.43 per cent to OMR 22.2 million. Operating expenses rose 22.3 per cent to OMR 10.6 million, including OMR 590,000 in start-up and pre-opening expenses for Maisarah Islamic Banking.
Total assets were up 14.81 per cent to OMR 2.34 billion. Net loans and advances to customers were up 8.4 per cent to 1.71 billion while deposits from customers rose 14.9 per cent to OMR 1.79 billion.Total shareholder equity was up 19.46 per cent to OMR 277.3 million………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oman issues new rules to boost lending to SMEs

Posted on 26 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Oman’s central bank plans to issue rules to boost lending to small and medium-sized firms, its chief said on Wednesday, in a new move to help bring unemployment down in the sultanate.
Supporting smaller firms is a key part of the government’s economic policy for tackling unemployment in Oman, estimated at more than 24 percent by the International Monetary Fund……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Nigeria approves $9 bln foreign loan to spur infrastructure

Posted on 26 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Nigeria’s National Economic Council approved a $9 billion loan from lenders including the Export- Import Bank of China, the Islamic Development Bank and the African Development Bank.
The loan, part of the country’s 2012-2014 borrowing plan, will be used by federal and state governments to fund new infrastructure, invest in agriculture and create jobs, National Planning Minister Shamsudeen Usman told reporters today in Abuja, the capital. Interest rates on the loan will be as low as 2 percent, and the repayment period is 40 years, with a 10-year moratorium………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Islamic banking grow rapidly in Pakistan

Posted on 26 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Islamic banking is growing at a rapid pace in Pakistan and the growth will accelerate further if the central bank continues to chalk out policies. Banks in this sector expect a total business of Rs1 trillion by 2015 on growing demand.
These were the views of Executive Vice President Head of Product Development and Shariah Compliance, Meezan Bank, Ahmed Ali Siddiqui, who was speaking to a select group of journalists at a workshop on ‘Islamic Banking’ at Meezan Bank’s head office………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Turkiye Finans issues $500 mln sukuk at 3.95 pct -bankers

Posted on 25 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Turkish Islamic bank Turkiye Finans issued a $500 million sukuk, or dollar-denominated Islamic bond, at a price of 3.95 percent on Wednesday, bankers said.
The bank, majority owned by Saudi Arabia’s National Commercial Bank, had mandated Citigroup, HSBV, NCB Capital and Noor Islamic Bank for the issue last week……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Bahraini Islamic lender plans African expansion

Posted on 25 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Bahrain-based Islamic lender Al Baraka Bank plans to expand its global footprint with a focus on Africa under a five-year plan that includes investments in Libya and Morocco, its chief executive told Reuters.
The lender, which has operations in the Middle East, Asia and Africa, aims to nearly double group assets and income by 2017 and is considering the introduction of an Africa-specific brand to support this effort………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Union National Bank contributes AED 4.777 mln to Zakat Fund

Posted on 25 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

His Highness Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan, Minister of Culture, Youth & Community Development, Chairman of UNB Group, handed over a cheque of AED 4,777,000 to His Excellency Dr. Hadif Bin Jaw`an Al-Dhahiri, Minister of Justice, and Chairman of the Zakat Fund. The event took place on Tuesday 23 April in the presence of officials from UNB, Al Wifaq, and Zakat Fund as well as media representatives.
His Highness Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan Minister of Culture, Youth & Community Development, Chairman of UNB Group, said, “UNB’s Group contribution to the Zakat Fund fulfils our mission and highlights our corporate values of supporting societal growth initiatives through UAE institutions that benefit the needy and deserving”………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Ahli United Bank reports Q1 profits of $309.8 mln

Posted on 25 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Excluding this non-recurring gain, AUB reported a 12.2 per cent increase in its net profit, which increased from $86.4 million in Q1/2012 to $96.9 million. This also represents a 23.3 per cent improvement over the Q4-2012 trailing quarter reported profit of $78.6 million. The Basic Earnings per Share was 5.7 cents, compared to 1.6 cents achieved in Q1/2012. The resultant adjusted Operating Basic Earnings per share was 1.8 cents after deducting exceptional gain.
The key drivers to these results was the increase in the operating income of the Group from $214.5 million to $224.2 million (+ 4.5 per cent) and the rise in net interest income by 11.0 per cent to $167.4 million (Q1/2012: $150.8 million)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

RAKBANK reports Q1 profits up 13 pct to AED 367.98 mln

Posted on 25 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Net interest income plus net profit from Islamic financing grew by six per cent compared to 31 March 2012 to AED 570.6 million. Non-interest income, which stood at AED 181.8 million by the end of the first quarter of 2013, climbed by 18 per cent compared to the same period last year. This increase is due to several streams of fee income stemming particularly from auto loans, mortgages, Bancassurance, and foreign exchange services. In addition, investment income grew by 50 per cent compared to same period last year as the bank continued to invest in quoted debt instruments.
Operating costs on the other hand, despite increasing by 5.2 per cent for the year, were well below total income growth of 8.6 per cent, indicating an improving profitability. “……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Oman central bank to issue rules to boost lending to SMEs

Posted on 25 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Oman’s central bank plans to issue rules to boost lending to small and medium-sized firms, its chief said on Wednesday, in a new move to help bring unemployment down in the sultanate.
Supporting smaller firms is a key part of the government’s economic policy for tackling unemployment in Oman, estimated at more than 24 percent by the International Monetary Fund.But bank lending growth in Oman hit a 22-month low of 10.9 percent in February, central bank data showed………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Breaking new ground: Setting misunderstandings aside, Islamic banking grows rapidly

Posted on 25 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Despite misunderstandings about Islamic banking in different sections of the society, it is growing at a rapid pace in Pakistan and the growth will accelerate further if the central bank continues to chalk out policies.
These were the views of Executive Vice President Head of Product Development & Shariah Compliance, Meezan Bank, Ahmed Ali Siddiqui, who was speaking to a select group of journalists at a workshop on ‘Islamic Banking’ at Meezan Bank’s head office on Tuesday………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Islamic Bank of Britain cuts rates for Sharia-compliant BTL mortgage

Posted on 24 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Islamic Bank of Britain, the UK’s only wholly Sharia compliant retail bank, has lowered the rental rate for its Sharia compliant Buy to Let Purchase Plan product range.
The new variable rental rate of 4.89% will apply to both IBB BTLPP products, i.e.: 1. Rent and acquisition BTLPP which requires a deposit of 25% (75% finance to value)……………………………………….Full Article: Source

National Bank Of Abu Dhabi Q1 profit up 36pct

Posted on 24 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Higher income from investments and fees helped National Bank of Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates’ largest lender by market value, to a 35.5 per cent jump in first-quarter net profit, the bank said on Tuesday.
The bank posted net profit of Dhs1.41 billion ($384 million) in the first three months of 2013, beating the average forecast of Dhs1.09 billion in a Reuters poll of analysts.Impairment charges for the first quarter of this year were Dhs322 million, up three per cent higher on the corresponding period last year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Morocco agrees $2.4 bln loan deal with IDB

Posted on 24 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Morocco expects to sign a $2.4 billion loan deal next month with the Saudi-based Islamic Development Bank (IDB), a Moroccan official told Reuters on Tuesday.
The North African country has agreed a package with the IDB under which it will receive $600 million each year from 2013 to 2016, said the official, who declined to be named. A small part of that sum will be a donation rather than a loan………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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