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Islamic Finance Briefing - Category | Banking more

Dubai Islamic Bank repays Dhs3.7bln to UAE finance ministry

Posted on 08 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The bank received the deposit in 2008 to boost its financial strength during the financial crisis. Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB) announced that it has repaid Dhs3.75 billion to the UAE finance ministry in full and ahead of contractual maturity, thanks to ‘a robust financial position and strong liquidity’.
The bank received the deposit from the ministry in 2008 to boost liquidity after the financial crisis hit lenders in the country. DIB has received the necessary regulatory and government approvals to repay the amount, it said in a statement………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gatehouse Bank’s CEO moves to Malaysia to link Islamic finance hubs

Posted on 08 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Gatehouse Bank is expanding into Southeast Asia with the opening of a new representative office in Malaysia. Richard Thomas OBE, will relinquish his current responsibilities as Chief Executive Officer and will take over a new role with the Bank to spearhead this SE Asia business expansion and operations.
This move into Malaysia follows on from the ground-breaking GBP 165 million acquisition of the law firm SJ Berwin’s offices at 10 Queen Street Place in London, in collaboration with a flourishing Malaysian Sovereign Wealth fund in September 2012………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Ajman Bank launches new home finance offer at 2.99 pct

Posted on 08 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Ajman Bank has announced a new Home Finance offer with a profit rate starting from 2.99 per cent. The move is, said the bank, part of its commitment to support the growth of the real estate sector and, following the signing of an MOU with Sheikh Zayed Housing Programme in August 2012, is also aimed to address the housing needs of customers and families in the UAE to acquire their homes at affordable rates.
Ajman Bank’s new Shari’ah compliant offer is available to both UAE Nationals and Residents, with finance amounts up to AED 5 million. The scheme provides up to 90 per cent of the property cost for UAE Nationals and up to 85 per cent for Expatriates. Repayment periods can be extended up to 25 years under flexible conditions………………………………………..Full Article: Source

IDB approves $617mln for development projects

Posted on 08 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) — a bank set up by 56 Islamic nations — has approved financial assistance worth $617 million (approximately Rs 54.16 billion) for development projects in different countries including Nepal.
The board meeting of the bank has decided to support education projects in Nepal, Botswana, Thailand and Fiji — non-member countries. The non-member grant has provided $750,000 (approximately Rs 65.84 million) from the Waqf Fund for various projects, it said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

DIB rise to highest since 2011 as bank repays loan: Dubai mover

Posted on 08 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Dubai Islamic Bank PJSC (DIB) climbed to the highest level in almost two years as the biggest Shariah- compliant lender in the United Arab Emirates paid a government loan it got in 2008 before it was due.
The shares jumped 4.1 percent to 2.27 dirhams, the highest close since April 2011. About 25 million shares were traded, or almost five times the three-month daily average, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The benchmark DFM General Index lost 0.3 percent………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oman: Islamic banks need comprehensive marketing approach

Posted on 08 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Marketing of banking services is highly sponsored by banks and financial institutions CEOs, to maximise their processes, types, figures and subsequently their profits. That in addition to their exerted efforts to attract new clients, thus during last decades, all banks established independent marketing departments and divisions.
These new functions serve different type of customers, and mainly set the plans, programmes, procedures and strategies that enable banks to achieve their objectives and targets………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Warba Bank achieves 33pct growth in corporate banking business during the second half of 2012

Posted on 08 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Warba Bank announced the achieving of positive results in terms of the financing activities of its Corporate Banking Group. This achievement stems from the strength of the bank’s operations and its diversified sources of income, as the bank continues to service vital market sectors inside and outside Kuwait.
During the past period, the bank focused on financing certain sectors; most notably amongst them are the retail, industry, real estate and petrochemicals sectors. Warba Bank ’s corporate financing portfolio increased by 33% during the Second Half of 2012. This was achieved by building a solid professional customer base; as well as easy, fast and efficient processing of transactions………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Emirates Islamic Bank launches new value-packed Reward Credit Card

Posted on 08 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Emirates Islamic Bank announced today the launch of the new Emirates Islamic Bank Rewards Credit Card, which is designed for customers looking to manage their day to day expenses. The new, fully Shari’ah compliant Rewards card offers flexibility and a range of benefits to its customers, and is available in Classic, Gold Platinum, as well as Infinite.
In addition to the wide array of features and benefits, the Rewards Card also offers card holders the ability to earn Choice Points on all purchases. Customers accumulate points at an accelerated rate – getting two points for every dirham spent, which can then be redeemed at a range of high profile retail partners, including Sharaf DG, Damas, Joyalukkas, Abu Dhabi Mall Carrefour, Spinneys and Home Center………………………………………..Full Article: Source

$ 617 mln IDB funding for new projects

Posted on 05 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

At the 289th meeting of its board of executive directors convened beginning of the week, the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) approved $ 617 million toward funding development projects, which included important projects in the areas of education ($ 174 million for Indonesia), electricity ($ 319.6 million for Iran, Uganda and Bangladesh), agriculture ($ 80 million for Morocco), sanitation ($ 15 million in Maldives) and health ($ 10 million for Mozambique).
The board members concurred to raise IDB’s participation in the capital of the Istanbul-based Kuwait Turkish Participation Bank Inc. by nearly $ 18 million to stand at $ 65 million………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Maybank Singapore Islamic Banking offers financing for Malaysian properties

Posted on 05 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Maybank Singapore Islamic Banking on Thursday launched two new Shariah-compliant banking products for buyers in Singapore to finance residential as well as commercial and industrial properties in Johor, Melaka, Kuala Lumpur and Penang.
The products, Islamic Home Financing and Islamic Commercial and Industrial Property Financing, were introduced by Maybank President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Abdul Wahid Omar at a media briefing. Both products are available for owner-occupied or investment properties, and come with a minimum financing of $100,000………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Two Islamic banks join forces to found private pension firm in Turkey

Posted on 05 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The new, highly state-aided private pension system has made the mouths of Islamic banks water, as two of Turkey’s non-interest, Islam-compliant banks look to establish a joint company.
The new regulations opening the way for Islamic banks to found non-interest pension funds and most recently enabling them to invest private pension funds in non-interest financial instruments encouraged Albaraka Türk and Kuveyt Türk to enter this business field. Another Islamic bank, Asya Participation bank already has its own private pension arm, while other Islamic banks were working with agency………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Most Arab banks ready for new international regulations - banking chief

Posted on 05 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Eighty per cent of Arab banks are in a position to meet new international regulations on the level of reserves they need to hold while all banks in Bahrain meet these standards, said a top official. Union of Arab Banks (UAB) chairman Adnan Ahmed Yousif was speaking on the sidelines of the annual Arab Banking Conference, which opened at the InterContinental Regency Bahrain in Manama.
Yousif, who is also chief executive of Al Baraka Banking Group, said there were 103 banks from 22 countries taking part in the event which has attracted more than 200 delegates on its first visit to Bahrain as a venue, according to a report in our sister publication, the Gulf Daily News………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oman’s Islamic banks get extension on overseas holdings

Posted on 05 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Oman’s central bank has granted Islamic banks a one-year relaxation of rules on the amount of foreign assets which they can hold, to give time for Islamic financial instruments to be developed domestically. Oman’s first full-fledged Islamic banks, Bank Nizwa and Al Izz Islamic Bank, were established late last year and are now starting to operate as the country introduces Islamic finance.
Under rules announced by the central bank in December, the two banks can hold no more than 40 percent of their net worth in the form of foreign currency-denominated assets………………………………………..Full Article: Source

All Bahraini banks ready to implement Basel III

Posted on 05 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Almost 100 per cent Bahraini banks are ready to implement the Basel III new capital requirements of BIS by year-end, a top banker said on Wednesday. The Chairman of the Union of Arab Banks (UAB) Adnan Ahmed Yousif on the sidelines of the Annual Arab Banking Conference 2013 said that the notion that Basel III would destroy the third world banking system was not based on facts.
“Our banks in Bahrain are 100% ready to implement the Basel III standards and almost 80% banks across the Arab region are ready to adopt to the new regulatory framework,” Adnan Yousif, added………………………………………..Full Article: Source

MAS says it is committed to developing Islamic financial services in Singapore

Posted on 04 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Singapore’s central bank said it remains committed to developing Islamic financial services in Singapore. Commenting about the lapse of two tax incentives for Islamic finance recently, Assistant Managing Director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), Ng Nam Sin, said this was “no reflection of MAS’ continuing commitment to develop Islamic financial services in Singapore.”
“Like all our tax incentives, they have a fixed tenure and in this case, of five years. It is useful to note that Islamic finance activities will continue to be incentivized alongside conventional finance activities under our other existing schemes,” said Mr Ng………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Jordan Islamic Bank net profits up 28.7 pct to $51.48 mln

Posted on 04 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Jordan Islamic Bank (JIB – part of Al Baraka Banking Group) reports net profits before tax of $72.21 million at end of financial year 2012 with an increase of $16.22 million and with a growth of 28.9 per cent compared to $55.99 million at the end 2011. Net profits after tax reached $51.48 million compared to $39.92 million at the end 2011, up 28.7 per cent.
JIB’s Board of Directors is recommending the Ordinary General Assembly to distribute cash dividends to shareholders at 15 per cent of the Bank’s capital………………………………………..Full Article: Source

IDB approves $ 617 mln funding for new development projects

Posted on 04 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) approved $ 617 million toward funding development projects, which included important projects in the areas of education ($ 174 million for Indonesia), electricity ($ 319.6 million for Iran, Uganda and Bangladesh), agriculture ($ 80 million for Morocco), sanitation ($ 15 million in Maldives) and health ($ 10 million for Mozambique).
The board members concurred to raise IDB’s participation in the capital of the Istanbul-based Kuwait Turkish Participation Bank Inc. by nearly $ 18 million to stand at $ 65 million………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Key GCC Islamic banking assets rise to $445bln

Posted on 03 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Islamic banking assets with commercial banks in the GCC reached $445 billion at the end of last year, up from $390bn in 2011, according to recent estimates by Ernst & Young’s Global Islamic Banking Centre. Reports indicate that in 2012, the Islamic banking industry in the GCC registered a 14 per cent year-on-year growth, which represents a slight deceleration in the average growth rate over the past five years of 19pc.
Reports also indicate that profitability now looks to be stabilising in major Islamic banking markets though Islamic banks have experienced a mixed recovery across markets………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sharjah Islamic Bank picks banks for sukuk sale - lead

Posted on 03 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Sharjah Islamic Bank has picked four banks to arrange meetings with fixed income investors ahead of a potential Islamic bond, or sukuk, issue, a lead manager said on Tuesday.
The lender chose Abu Dhabi-based Al Hilal Bank, HSBC , Kuwait’s Liquidity Management House and Standard Chartered to lead the roadshows, which begin on Thursday and will take place in Asia and Europe………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatar’s CBQ said to pick banks for bond sale

Posted on 03 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Commercial Bank Of Qatar (CBQ), which is buying a majority stake in Turkish lender Alternatifbank, has picked two banks for a potential bond sale to boost its core capital, sources said.
The sale of a capital-boosting bond, a rare move in the Gulf, would help assuage analysts’ concerns over CBQ’s capital position which have been exacerbated by its recent agreement to buy the controlling stake in Alternatifbank………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oman Islamic banks get extension on foreign assets

Posted on 03 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Oman’s central bank has granted Islamic banks a one-year relaxation of rules on the amount of foreign assets which they can hold, to give time for Islamic financial instruments to be developed domestically.
Oman’s first full-fledged Islamic banks, Bank Nizwa and Al Izz International Bank, were established late last year and are now starting to operate as the country introduces Islamic finance………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Islamic bank framework on course

Posted on 03 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Islamic banking framework is expected to become operational before the end of the year, the Bank of Zambia (BoZ) has said. BoZ governor, Michael Gondwe said the central bank has held several consultations since 2008 both internally and externally and has also subjected the Islamic banking framework to expert review by internationally-renowned Islamic banking experts.
Dr Gondwe, however, noted that the rapid growth of Islamic finance raises a series of important questions, such as whether Islamic finance should be regulated differently from conventional finance………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Absa awarded South Africa’s best Islamic bank

Posted on 03 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Absa Islamic Banking has been awarded Best Islamic Bank in South Africa for the fourth successive year, the Barclays-owned South African bank revealed at the weekend. This was announced at a prestigious ceremony in Dubai last week.
Afzal Seedat, Head of Absa Islamic Banking, said this was a “vote of confidence” from the bank’s clients, stakeholders and industry peers globally. “The award provides us with the impetus to become the ‘Go-To’ bank in Shari’ah compliant finance for our customers,” Seedat said in a statement………………………………………..Full Article: Source

KFH-Turkey increases capital by TRY 960 mln

Posted on 03 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Kuwait Finance House in Turkey (KFH-Turkey) CEO Ufuk Iwan announced that the bank will gradually increase its capital by TRY 960 million to reach TRY 2.06 billion over two phases.
The first phase ends in May (TRY 600 million), while the second phase will end in May 2014 (TRY 360 million), according to a media statement. He added that the goal of increasing the capital is to support expansion plans and “establish a robust financial status, in addition to expanding in Turkey and overseas markets”………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gulf’s Islamic banks pressed to diversify money market deals

Posted on 02 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Regulators, scholars and simple economics are pressing Islamic banks in the Gulf to diversify their money market transactions, a trend which could spur growth of the region’s financial markets. Islamic money market assets have expanded rapidly in the last few years along with the rise of sharia-compliant banking.
In the UAE, for instance, Islamic certificates of deposit issued by the central bank and held by commercial banks have more than tripled in the past two years, to Dh15.1 billion ($4.1 billion) last December from Dh4.6 billion in 2010, central bank data shows………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Turkey makes great strides with Islamic banking

Posted on 02 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Turkish Islamic banking and finance sector commands a 5% to 6% of the nation’s overall banking assets, much lower compared to Malaysia’s 20% or US$65.6 billion (RM202.7 billion) in assets in 2012. The secular Turkey is making great strides with more progress expected in the coming years, though it conceded that Islamic banks are still dependent on interest rates as the core benchmark for Islamic banking business, according to a board member of the Turkey’s central bank.
“Turkey is a secular country, hence the government has no Syariah board like in Malaysia where there is a Syariah board, but the Islamic banks have their own consultation boards composed of Islamic experts,” Central Bank of Turkey board member Necdet Sensoy said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank approves 25.4pct dividend

Posted on 02 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB), UAE’s biggest Sharia-compliant bank by market value, has recommended paying cash dividend at 25.4 per cent, equivalent to 50 per cent of 2012 net profit to shareholders, the bank said.
ADIB Group reported end of December 2012 Dh1.2 billion net profit, an increase of 4 per cent over the previous year, according to Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX). The net revenues for 2012 were Dh3.6 billion, and the expenses hiked by 8.1 per cent year on year. The total assets stood at Dh85.7 billion at the end of 2012, up 15.2 per cent on the same point of the previous year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Filling a niche for Islamic banking

Posted on 02 April 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

When Fabiola Nava Carrera told her friends that she was going to pursue a Master of Business Administration degree in Islamic finance at a Malaysian university, they were taken aback.
“I was very interested in going there to see what was going on, because I knew nothing about Asian and Islamic culture,” said Ms. Carrera, a 27-year-old Mexican who had previously worked in international trade. “But my friends in Mexico couldn’t believe that I wanted to go to Malaysia, because they thought that it would be too dangerous or that the culture would be too different.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Barwa Bank eyes full-fledged sukuk platform by end-2013

Posted on 28 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Barwa Bank expects its sukuk trading platform to become full-fledged by the year-end and sees the market as “very competitive and lucrative with a great potential”, chief investment officer Bashar Jallad said. Jallad said Barwa Bank was active in both the primary and secondary sukuk markets and started to act as a custodian for some of the clients.
“The sukuk market is limited but in the last couple of years we have seen quite a decent pipeline of issuances. There is a lot of appetite for Shariah-compliant products here,” Jallad said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Islamic banking assets in GCC jump 14pct, paced by Qatar

Posted on 28 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Islamic banking assets with commercial banks in the Gulf Cooperation Council region leapt 14% in 2012, paced by Qatar, according to Ernst & Young’s Global Islamic Banking Center.
During the same period, conventional assets held in these banks grew by just 8.1%, the data, contained in a report on the E&YGIBC website, shows, although the pace of the growth of the Islamic banking assets was below that of the five-year average rate for the region, of 19%………………………………………..Full Article: Source

BankDhofar appoints new Chief Islamic Banking Officer

Posted on 28 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

BankDhofar annoucned the appointment of Sohail Niazi as Chief Islamic Banking Officer of its Islamic window “Maisarah” reporting to Tony Mahoney, Chief Executive Officer of BankDhofar.
Niazi brings a wealth of experience from his eighteen years in the banking industry. Most recently Niazi was Acting CEO with Elaf Bank, an Islamic wholesale bank in Bahrain, and previously worked at many globally recognised and respected institutions such as Bank of America, Morgan Stanley and KPMG Consulting………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Meethaq seminar highlights Islamic banking features

Posted on 28 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Meethaq, the pioneer of Islamic banking in Oman from Bank Muscat, hosted a seminar on Islamic banking in Nizwa. Dr Abdullah bin Mubarak Al Abri from the Ministry of Awqaf and Religious Affairs addressed the seminar aimed at raising awareness and familiarising people with the main characteristics of Islamic finance.
Sulaiman Al Harthy, group general manager (Islamic Banking), said: “Meethaq is proud to take the lead in launching a suite of banking products which combine traditional values with modernity. Meethaq has adopted the best practices in Islamic banking and finance worldwide to combine a robust model which will protect customers and complement the Islamic banking industry. The Meethaq strategy is to attract customers through innovative Sharia-based products and services. The operations are managed by an experienced team, separate from conventional banking.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Filling a niche for Islamic banking

Posted on 27 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Islamic finance differs from conventional banking systems in that usury and speculation are prohibited. Transactions have to comply with Shariah, the legal code of Islam based on the Koran, and are based on principles of risk and profit sharing.
Islamic finance is booming. According to figures from Hong Leong Islamic Bank, a financial institution in Kuala Lumpur, Islamic finance activity has been growing 14 percent per year, with Islamic finance assets exceeding $1.1 trillion in cumulative value in 2011………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Pakistan: IBI share in banking industry surges to 10 pct

Posted on 27 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Islamic Banking Industry (IBI) continued to post a healthy growth, touching for the first time a share of 10 percent in the banking industry at the end of the Calendar Year 2012 (CY12). With a substantial growth of 35.5 percent or Rs 185 billion, IBI deposits surged to Rs 706 billion by the end of CY12 against Rs 521 billion at the end of CY11.
According to the State Bank of Pakistan, IBI posted a healthy growth as far as deposit base was concerned during the period under review. IBI’s share in the entire banking industry increased from 8.4 percent in CY11 to 9.7 percent by the end of CY12. IBI’s asset base also continued to expend, touching Rs 837 billion by the end of CY12, up from Rs 641 billion in CY11, depicting an increase of 30 percent or Rs 196 billion in a single year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Emirates Islamic Bank offers special discounts and deals to customers on Fridays

Posted on 27 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Emirates Islamic Bank announced the launch of a special Friday campaign on various financial services and products at its Dubai Festival City branch. The limited period offer, valid until April 8, 2013, provides special discounts and deals on credit cards and personal finance.
Customers of Emirates Islamic Bank can take advantage of zero per cent processing fee on personal finance and a waiver of annual fee for the first year on credit cards every Friday until April 8, 2013. The special offer also enables customers to earn 20,000 joining points on the Emirates Islamic Bank Rewards Credit Card and 100 points for SALIK and NOL on Emirates Islamic Bank RTA credit cards………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Meezan Bank signs MoU with JIBF

Posted on 27 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Meezan Bank, Pakistan’s first and largest Islamic Bank, has signed MoU with the Journal of Islamic Banking and Finance (JIBF), one of the oldest Islamic finance research publications of Pakistan (1984), under which Meezan Bank will contribute its research and articles on Islamic Banking & Finance to JIBF for publication.
With the objective to bridge the gap between academia and industry, Meezan Bank with its largest research team across all banks in Pakistan, will share case studies, research papers and articles with JIBF………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Al Hilal Islamic Banking Board meets

Posted on 27 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

An expanded meeting for al Hilal Islamic Banking Sharia Supervisory Board was held recently at ahlibank’s head office in Wattiyah. The meeting was chaired by Dr. Ali Mohyeddin al Qurah Daghi, and included Dr. Farid Mohammed Hadi, Dr. AbdulAziz al Qasar and Sheikh Aflah bin Ahmed bin Hamad al Khalili and Azhar Hamid.
During the meeting of Al Hilal’s Sharia Supervisory Board a number of approvals were attained which included approvals on products and their features, as well as the approval of the prospectus of the upcoming Sharia complaint Al Hilal Mena Fund which will be launched in the near future and approval of this year’s Shaira Audit and training plan………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sharia compliance: To be or not to be

Posted on 26 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Islamic banking is sitting on the horns of a double dilemma. Islamic financial institutions have to compete with conventional banks if they have to stay in contention and yet be compliant with Sharia principles while carrying on business.
On the other hand, due to their relatively smaller size and operations, Islamic banking products tend to become more costly, further limiting the scope. In fact, according to the latest numbers out in the market, the average return on equity of Sharia compliant financial institutions has fallen in comparison to the situation one year ago………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Yet another step to strengthen Islamic banking in Oman

Posted on 26 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Since the beginning of the launch Islamic banking in the Sultanate, numerous conferences and workshops have been conducted to delve deep into the structure of Islamic finance and explore the themes of its emergence in Oman. But the recent Oman Second Islamic Banking and Finance Conference witnessed vital issues relating to Islamic banking and industry being deliberated upon and decisions being taken by the authorities concerned.
Although the conference delved deep into improving the regulatory infrastructure and supporting harmonisation and linkages among different jurisdictions, the most important announcement was restriction on the entry of foreign Islamic banks into Oman………………………………………..Full Article: Source

CIMB starts brokerage and corporate advisory business in Korea

Posted on 26 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

CIMB has opened a brokerage and corporate advisory businesses in Seoul, South Korea, after obtaining an equities brokerage licence from the country’s Financial Services Commission.
John Choi, the branch manager and the head of equities, and Sean Cho, the head of investment banking will lead a staff of 39 people, providing stock brokerage, research and corporate advisory services to both domestic and international clients………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Pakistan as a global leader in Islamic banking and finance

Posted on 25 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

In recent years, Islamic banking and finance in Pakistan has experienced phenomenal growth. Islamic deposits – held by fully-fledged Islamic banks and Islamic windows of conventional banks – at present stand at 9.7% of total bank deposits in the country: meaning that every 10th rupee is now being deposited in an Islamic bank account.
Similarly, assets managed by banks offering Islamic financial services are 8.6% of total banking assets in the country. Net Islamic savings and investments are 8.19% of the total savings and investment in the banking sector in Pakistan………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Meethaq Sharia Board inducts 2 more members

Posted on 25 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Sharia Supervisory Board of Meethaq, the pioneer of Islamic banking in Oman from Bank Muscat, conducted its first meeting of 2013 under the chairmanship of Shaikh Dr Ali Qaradaghi, in the presence of Shaikh Essam Muhammad Ishaq and Shaikh Majid al Kindi. The board inducted two new members — Abdulqader Thomas and Dr Saeed al Muharrami.
The two experts in the field of Islamic banking will serve as non-Shari’a members and assist the Shari’a voting members, providing insights on various Islamic banking issues. The board reviewed Meethaq activities during 2012 and discussed the strategy for the coming period………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Yet another step to strengthen Islamic banking in Oman

Posted on 25 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Since the beginning of the launch Islamic banking in the Sultanate, numerous conferences and workshops have been conducted to delve deep into the structure of Islamic finance and explore the themes of its emergence in Oman. But the recent Oman Second Islamic Banking and Finance Conference witnessed vital issues relating to Islamic banking and industry being deliberated upon and decisions being taken by the authorities concerned.
Although the conference delved deep into improving the regulatory infrastructure and supporting harmonisation and linkages among different jurisdictions, the most important announcement was restriction on the entry of foreign Islamic banks into Oman………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Warba Bank boosts investments portfolio

Posted on 25 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Warba Bank, an upcoming Islamic lender in Kuwait, has made significant progress over the past year in building its portfolio of investments in the region and the world, based on its strong business model and extensive networks of business contacts.
This reflects the potential of the bank’s team and their ability to complete deals with major companies in the local, regional and global markets, said a senior official. During 2012, Warba Bank completed a series of crucial investments in key investment sectors, covering international markets reflecting the bank’s commitment to generating lucrative returns at low risk………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Barwa Bank net income up 41pct in 2012

Posted on 25 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Barwa Bank Group, Qatar’s fastest growing Shari’ah compliant banking service provider has announced its financial results for the year ended December 31, 2012. The Group recorded strong growth in both balance sheet and profitability, with Net Income for 2012 up by 41% at QAR345mn compared to QAR 244mn in 2011.
Total assets increased by 32% to reach QAR25.3bn, a result of 66% growth in the financing portfolio from QAR 9.2bn to QR 15.3bn, with customer deposits rising from QAR 10.1bn to QR 14.8bn during 2012. (Press Release)

Indonesia Mandiri targets 50 pct increase in profit

Posted on 25 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Bank Syariah Mandiri, the Islamic unit of Bank Mandiri, the country’s largest lender by assets, is targeting its profit to increase 50 percent this year as it seeks to boost its branches across Indonesia.
Yuslam Fauzi, president director of BSM, said in Bogor on Thursday that the lender aims to reach profit of Rp 1.2 trillion ($123.7 million) this year from Rp 800 billion last year. Yuslam was speaking in Bogor during a signing ceremony between postal service Pos Indonesia and BSM. Yuslam said that as profit rose last year, its assets also increased to Rp 55 trillion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

CBJ seeks ways to issue sukuk

Posted on 22 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Central Bank of Jordan (CBJ) is currently examining mechanisms to issue sovereign Islamic sukuk in the primary market in order to widen the base of investment tools that can be traded in the secondary market on the one hand and, on the other, to come up with a new method for financing the Treasury besides the traditional financing means.
Addressing experts meeting at the Arab Academy for Banking & Financial Sciences on Thursday, CBJ Governor Ziad Fariz underlined the importance of coming up with new financing tools in accordance with Sharia (Islamic law) to accelerate the economic growth………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Islamic Banks in Indonesia, Malaysia go rural

Posted on 22 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Islamic banks in Malaysia and Indonesia are opening new branches in rural areas as they target the newly rich in Southeast Asia’s largest Muslim nations. HSBC Amanah Malaysia added 22 outlets in the last three years, bringing the total to 26 across the country, chief executive officer Rafe Haneef said in an interview on Wednesday.
BRI Syariah, a unit of Bank Rakyat Indonesia, will set up 94 branches in 2013 to meet demand in smaller cities such as those on the islands of Java and Sumatra, according to Lukita Tri Prakasa, the bank’s corporate secretary………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatar: Rapid growth in Islamic banking assets

Posted on 22 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Qatar has been ranked as the country where Islamic banking assets grew fastest in 2012. The country’s Islamic banking assets were estimated to have grown by more than 23 percent during last year. Qatar’s regulatory clarity has helped its Islamic banks to achieve the high growth rate, said the report by the Ernst & Young Global Islamic Banking Center.
There is potential for a strong Islamic capital market play in Qatar in future. Barring the conventional industry leader, Islamic banks are comparable in size to conventional peers. Large infrastructure spend will fuel continued profitable growth for the banking industry, the report noted………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Turkey urged to seize Islamic banking opportunity

Posted on 22 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Turkish Islamic banking sector will triple in 10 years reaching $100 billion by 2023, while the country would have even more potential if it would meet the foreign demand by offering more of a variety of Islamic financial instrument, an Ernst & Young report has said.
Islamic banking, which follows the requirements of Shaira and does not charge interest, has emerged as a prominent system at a time when European banks that have been the backbone of global sector are only slightly recovering from the aftermath of the financial crisis. The Islamic banking sector offers great opportunities for Turkey as well, as the country seeks its share in interest-free banking in light of the value and market presence of Islamic banks, also known as participation banks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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