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Islamic Finance Briefing - Category | New Launches more

Dubai’s DMCC launching Islamic commodity trade platform

Posted on 21 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Dubai’s government-owned commodities centre is launching a sharia-compliant commodity trading platform which Islamic banks in the Gulf could use to manage their short-term fund flows.
The Tradeflow platform developed by the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC) allows trading of warehouse receipts, which represent ownership of commodities stored at warehouses. Islamic banks cannot use conventional interbank money markets because of Islam’s ban on interest, so they have struggled with a shortage of instruments to manage liquidity………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Islamic finance body in ‘final stages’ of 1st sukuk issuance, says BNM Governor

Posted on 21 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

International Islamic Liquidity Management Corp., backed by a group of central banks located in Asia and the Middle East, is in the “final stages” of issuing its first sukuk or Islamic bond, Malaysian central bank governor Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz said on Wednesday.
Kuala Lumpur-headquartered IILM, established in 2010, was entasked to issue short-term sukuk, or Islamic bonds, to help sharia-compliant banks manage liquidity and create a liquid cross-border market for Islamic instruments. “The shareholders (of IILM) are in the process of supplying the underlying assets for the sukuk,” Zeti told reporters in the Malaysian capital. “There will be an announcement on this in the near term, it would be correct to say that it is in the final stages.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Mobius to run Shariah-compliant Asian equity fund

Posted on 21 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Mark Mobius is lined up to manage a Shariah-compliant Asian Growth Fund, one of a trio to be launched by Franklin Templeton.
The funds, which include the first ever Ucits-structured, Shariah-compliant fund Franklin Templeton Global Sukuk (bond) Fund, will opened to international investors on March 25th. The firm is bringing the funds to market in response to growing interest in Shariah-compliant investment products………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Abu Dhabi’s Al Hilal Bank to issue sukuk in Q3

Posted on 20 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Abu Dhabi government-owned Al Hilal Bank plans to issue a debut Islamic bond worth $500 million in the third quarter of this year to fund growth and diversify its balance sheet, its chief executive said on Tuesday.
“The sukuk was planned last year but we believe third quarter this year is the right time for our first Islamic bond,” Mohamed Berro told Reuters. “It’s a mix of getting some funding and benchmarking the bank in comparison to its peers on the debt market,” he said, adding that the bank expects to obtain a credit rating in the coming two or three months………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Turkiye Finans set for 100 mln lira sukuk issue-bankers

Posted on 20 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Turkish Islamic bank Turkiye Finans is in the final stage of preparing a sukuk, or Islamic bond, issue which is planned to have a volume of around 100 million lira ($55 million), bankers said.
The bank, majority owned by Saudi Arabia’s National Commercial Bank, could make the issue within several weeks if market conditions are right, bankers said. Is Investment is mandated for the issue. ($1 = 1.8129 Turkish liras)……………………………………….Full Article: Source

International firm introduces three Shariah-compliant funds

Posted on 20 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

International investment firm Franklin Templeton has launched one debt market fund and two equity market funds, which are all Shariah-compliant, media reports said on Tuesday. “Look, there’s a chance for you to invest in ways you think is proper,” said Templeton Emerging Markets Group Executive Chairman Mark Mobius in Dubai on March 17.
“Looking at the potential size of the market at about $500 billion, you’ve got about 1.3 billion Muslim investors and you have to attract them. It’s a matter of taking the message to [them],” the newspaper quoted Mobius as saying………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Russell introduces Russell-IdealRatings Islamic Index Series

Posted on 20 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Russell Indexes and IdealRatings introduce the Russell-IdealRatings Islamic Index Series, a newly enhanced index series for Shariah investors. These new indexes benefit Shariah multi-asset investors by combining the deep experience and leading methodology of the Russell Global Indexes with the Shariah oversight of IdealRatings.
Furthermore, they represent another way that Russell is demonstrating its more than 35 year commitment to helping investors in the Middle East with its unique mix of multi-asset investment consulting, investment management and fiduciary services and tools………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Saudi Aramco, Dow petchem venture launches Islamic bond offering

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Sadara Chemical Company, a joint venture between Saudi Aramco and Dow Chemical , said it launched a local currency Islamic bond to help fund the construction of a $20 billion petrochemical complex in the east of the kingdom.
The facility, located at Jubail Industrial City in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province, will be the world’s largest chemical complex ever built in a single phase. Size and pricing of the sukuk, which is only available to Saudi investors, will be determined once roadshows have taken place. The sukuk has a 16-year lifespan, the statement said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Saudi’s Bahri mulls sukuk to fund acquisition

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

National Shipping Co of Saudi Arabia (Bahri) is considering a debut Islamic bond issue to help refinance debt taken on for its $1.3bn acquisition of Saudi Aramco’s marine unit last year, three sources said on Sunday.
The purchase of Vela’s fleet, which cost 4.88 billion riyals ($1.3 billion), made Bahri the world’s fourth-largest owner of very large crude carriers, or VLCCs, with part of the agreement making Bahri the sole provider of VLCC crude oil shipping services to Aramco………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Dubai: $1bln sukuk launched

Posted on 15 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB), the largest Sharia-compliant lender in the UAE by assets, launched a $1 billion hybrid sukuk. The perpetual sukuk, which is aimed at shoring up its core or Tier 1 capital, launched at a profit rate of 6.25 per cent, in line with final guidance released earlier in the day.
The final guidance was substantially tighter than initial price talk of 7pc, after arranging banks said order books totalled $14bn, indicating massive demand for the deal. HSBC Holdings, Standard Chartered, National Bank of Abu Dhabi, Emirates NBD and DIB itself are mandated lead arrangers for the deal……………………………………Full Article: Source

Oman to issue 200 mln rials of bonds, sukuk -c.bank

Posted on 14 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Oman plans to issue a total of about 200 million rials ($520 million) of conventional bonds and sukuk in line with its budget financing needs, central bank chief Hamood Sangour al-Zadjali said on Wednesday.
He did not specify the timing or other details, beyond saying that the sukuk, denominated in rials, were likely to be issued towards the end of 2013 or at the start of next year. It would be Oman’s first sovereign sukuk issue, as the country is now launching an Islamic finance industry…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Mashreq Al Islami unveils Islamic Gold

Posted on 14 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Mashreq Al Islami , the Islamic banking division of Mashreq, one of the UAE’s leading financial institutions announced the official launch of Islamic Gold proposition. The new product underlines the Bank’s commitment towards its customers and continuous product innovation. The Premium banking segment can now avail Sharia’h Compliant Islamic Gold offering with customized financial solutions.
The launch event was attended by customers and senior officials from the Bank to engage in an informative session. Mashreq representatives comprised Tooran Asif - Head of Personal Banking, Momin Hyat - Manager, Sharia’h Covernance & Compliance, Caetano Fernandes - Head of Mashreq Gold and Ali Moosa - Regional Manager Distribution…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Nakheel issues Dh120mln sukuk

Posted on 13 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Nakheel issued a sukuk (Islamic bond) worth Dh120 million on Tuesday, the fourth tranche that forms part of the developer’s billion-dollar restructuring plan. The new sukuk issuance takes the total amount issued to Dh4.27 billion, the company said.
“We continue to successfully implement our revised business plan and to honour our commitment to the settlement of trade creditor claims,” a company spokesman said. In January, the developer issued an Islamic bond worth Dh121 million. The first tranche was issued in August 2011, part of the company’s $16 billion restructuring plan………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Emirates eyes sukuk issue this week

Posted on 12 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Emirates airline, Dubai’s flagship carrier, plans to issue a 10-year amortising Islamic bond, or sukuk, this week, after releasing early price talk for the deal. The sukuk, maturing 2023, will have an amortising structure, with an average weighted life of five years, arranging banks said.
An amortising bond is structured in a way that gradually reduces the value of the bond over a fixed period of time, meaning the borrower pays off the full amount before the final maturity date………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Turkey’s Bank Asya plans 10-yr subordinated sukuk issue up to $300 mln

Posted on 12 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Turkish Islamic lender Bank Asya said on Monday it had mandated banks for a subordinated sukuk issue worth up to $300 million with a ten-year maturity.
The lender made the statement to the Istanbul Stock Exchange. Strong investor demand and a need to improve capital adequacy ratios are causing Turkey’s Islamic banks to consider issuing subordinated sukuk, bankers and analysts told Reuters last month………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatar c.bank says to issue 7 bln riyals debt

Posted on 11 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Qatar’s Central Bank will issue 4 billion riyals ($1.1 billion) of local currency Sukuk and 3 billion riyals of local currency conventional bonds. The issuances are part of an adjustment of monetary policy and in order to help commercial banks meet Basel III liquidity requirements, reported Reuters, citing the Central Bank.
The Central Bank will announce a timescale for the issuances later. Local currency debt will be issued every quarter, half with three-year maturities and half with five-year, it said in a statement cited by Reuters………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Central bank issues QR4bln bonds, sukuk

Posted on 11 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Qatar’s central bank yesterday issued QR1bn ($300mn) of local currency sukuk and QR3bn of local currency conventional bonds, as part of an adjustment of monetary policy and in order to help commercial banks meet Basel III liquidity requirements.
Local currency debt will be issued every quarter, half with three-year maturities and half with five-year, the central bank said in a statement. It did not give specific dates or sizes for future issues, saying they would be announced later. “The aim of issuing these bonds is to develop monetary policy and the implementation of a mechanism of co-ordination between monetary and fiscal policy and support the strength of the banking system and financial and market tools,” it said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Meethaq launches Shari’a compliant current account

Posted on 11 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Meethaq, the pioneer of Islamic banking in Oman from Bank Muscat, has launched an innovative Shari’a compliant current account which has evoked good response.
Meethaq current account is based on the fundamental Islamic principle of Qard (interest free loan) whereby the customer is the lender and the bank is the borrower. Qard (interest free loan) is a contract whereby the principal amount deposited by customers is guaranteed to be repaid by the bank on demand………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Turkish state to open two non-interest Islamic banks

Posted on 08 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Turkish state will establish two new participation banks that offer interest-free services, using the names of Vakıfbank and Halkbank to benefit from their credibility in the market, sector players have said.
The new banks to be established will act as completely separate institutions from their eponyms with new banking permission licenses and fields of operation, but the brand popularity of Vakıfbank and Halkbank will help the banks be acknowledged in the market. Last week, Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan hinted that two state-owned banks may offer interest-free services, without giving specific names………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatar gears up to sell $1.1bln in bonds, sukuk

Posted on 08 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Qatar will sell QR4bn ($1.1bn) of three-year and five-year bonds and sukuk, the state news agency said yesterday. The Qatar Central Bank will offer local banks QR3bn worth of bonds and QR1bn worth of Shariah-compliant notes, Qatar News Agency (QNA) said.
The local currency issues will take place quarterly, it said, without specifying how much of each maturity would be sold. In January, the International Monetary Fund’s mission chief for Qatar told Reuters that the objective behind an issuance would be to build a domestic sovereign yield curve. Qatar Central Bank was not available for comment………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Emirates airline getting a taste for sukuk

Posted on 08 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

In what would be its second bond sale this year, Emirates has mandated banks to arrange a potential dollar-denominated, benchmark bond [or sukuk] sale subject to market conditions, according to lead arrangers Citibank and Standard Chartered Bank.
Confirming the same, Emirates said in a statement to Gulf News yesterday: “Emirates has mandated Citigroup and Standard Chartered Bank as Joint Global Coordinators and Joint Lead Managers, together with Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank, Dubai Islamic Bank and Emirates NBD Capital as Joint Lead Managers, to arrange a series of fixed income investor meetings in the UAE and Europe commencing on March 7,” adding that a USD Regulation S Sukuk benchmark offering may follow subject to market conditions………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Emirates to issue second Sukuk in 2013

Posted on 07 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Dubai’s flagship carrier Emirates Airline has authorized banks to arrange a dollar-denominated Sukuk sale this year. This would be the airline’s second bond sale in 2013.
A statement by the airline, issued to the Gulf News, reads that “Emirates has mandated Citigroup and Standard Chartered Bank as Joint Global Coordinators and Joint Lead Managers, together with Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank, Dubai Islamic Bank and Emirates NBD Capital as Joint Lead Managers, to arrange a series of fixed income investor meetings in the UAE and Europe commencing on March 7”………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Dubai Islamic Bank set for high yield sukuk

Posted on 06 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB) has hired banks to prepare a sukuk sale that asset managers say reflects an increasing appetite for risk among global investors. The world’s first Sharia-compliant commercial lender said it had hired Emirates NBD Capital, HSBC, National Bank of Abu Dhabi and Standard Chartered for investor roadshows beginning next week.
A benchmark dollar perpetual Tier 1 sukuk may follow, “subject to market conditions”, the bank said in a statement to the Dubai Financial Market. This Islamic bond is a particularly complex instrument and “right at the riskier end of what we’ve seen to date out of the GCC”, said Doug Bitcon, the head of fixed income and portfolios at Rasmala Investment Bank………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Al Hilal Islamic Banking Services launches term deposit account

Posted on 06 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

After the successful launch of five branches of Al Hilal Islamic Banking Services from Ahlibank, the leading Islamic Banking services provider in the Sultanate, recently announced the launch of its Sharia Compliant term deposit account.
Abdullah Al Jabry, Head of Al Hilal Islamic Banking Services, highlighted the characteristics of the product “The Term Deposit Account makes both long term and short term investment opportunities available to our clients. By Investing funds with Al Hilal Term Deposit account our customers can benefit from attractive Sharia permissible returns.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Almarai to launch second Saudi riyal-sukuk

Posted on 05 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Saudi Stock Exchange’s benchmark index Tasi closed 0.45% lower at 6,956.53 points. While market bellwether SABIC added 0.27% to reach SR92. Dairy food giant Almarai ended unchanged at SR66.00.
Earlier in the day, Almarai said it plans to issue its second tranche of an SR-denominated Islamic bond (sukuk) under its sukuk programme, totaling SR2.3bn ($613m), in line with the approval of the extraordinary general assembly held on Nov. 19 2011. This second tranche of Sukuk will be a private offering to sophisticated investors resident in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Agaoglu seeks $2 bln Islamic debt for Istanbul finance hub

Posted on 04 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Agaoglu Group, a Turkish company with interests in construction, energy and tourism, plans to raise $2 billion in Islamic debt to finance the construction of Istanbul’s financial district. Aktif Bank is in talks with banks in the Gulf Cooperation Council to sell sukuk in April, Agaoglu Chairman Ali Agaoglu said in an interview today in Dubai, where he opened a representative office to lure Gulf wealth to Turkey’s construction industry. The fundraising would also include Murabaha facilities, he said.
The Istanbul Financial Center project is part of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s plan to boost Turkey’s regional importance and make the economy one of the world’s 10 biggest by 2023. Construction has already begun on the Asian coast of Istanbul, a city of 13 million, in a district called Atasehir………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Noor Awqaf formed to tap Islamic finance

Posted on 04 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed to establish a new asset management firm, specialising in Awqaf (Islamic endownments), in Dubai’s bid to become a global centre for the business of Shariah-compliant in line with the emirate’s vision to position as the world’s capital for the Islamic economy.
Ahmed Kalim, Deputy Group chief executive officer, Noor Investment Group, and Tayeb Abdel Rahman Al Rayes, secretary-general of Awqaf and Minors Affairs Foundation (Amaf), have signed the MoU to set up Noor Awqaf LLC in the UAE. Noor Awqaf will complement the work of Amaf in offering enabling financial services to Awqaf entities around the world………………………………………..Full Article: Source

StanChart Saadiq opens first branch in Sarawak

Posted on 01 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Standard Chartered Saadiq Berhad (StanChart Saadiq), the Islamic banking subsidiary of Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia, opened its first branch in Kuching last week. StanChart Saadiq chief executive officer Wasim Saifi said the new branch will further support the growth of Islamic banking in the country and, at the same time, strengthen its Islamic banking footprint in Sarawak and Sabah.
“Islamic banking has been growing twice as fast as conventional banking, owing to the rising customer demand, increasing sophistication of Islamic banking offerings and strong government support,” Wasim said in a statement. ……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Malaysia: Exim Bank plans US$1bln sukuk

Posted on 27 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Export-Import Bank of Malaysia Bhd (Exim Bank) plans to sell Islamic bonds in the global market, the second by an Asian company in 2013 after a two-year absence. The state-owned trade finance provider invited proposals from banks to arrange US$1bil (RM3.1bil) of dollar-denominated debt for a possible second-quarter offering, said three people familiar with the deal.
The lender aimed to increase the proportion of syariah loans to 30% of the total in two years from 20% now, chief executive officer Adissadikin Ali said in an interview yesterday, declining to comment on the potential issuance………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Indonesian government raises $1.5 bln from Sukuk sale

Posted on 27 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Finance Ministry raised Rp 14.9 trillion ($1.5 billion) from the sale of rupiah-denominated Islamic bonds to Indonesian citizens on Monday as part of the country’s effort to raise funds to plug its ballooning budget deficit. The sale of the Shariah-compliant sukuk notes is also intended to spur growth in the Islamic finance sector in the country that is home to the world’s largest Muslim population.
The sukuk, called Sukuk Retail Indonesia (Sukri), will be the first rupiah-denominated Islamic bonds aimed at retail investors in Indonesia this year. “Demand by investors during the offering period was high,” Robert Pakpahan, the director general of the debt management office at the Finance Ministry in Jakarta, said……………………………………….Full Article: Source

DEWA to issue $ 500 mln sukuk this week

Posted on 27 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority plans to issue an Islamic bond, or sukuk, of at least $ 500 million this week, after releasing early price guidance for the deal on Tuesday. The emirate’s sole utility, rated BBB, is aiming to sell the dollar-denominated sukuk at a profit rate in the low 3 percent area, arranging banks said.
DEWA Chief Executive Saeed Mohammed Al-Tayer indicated last week the sukuk would be $ 1 billion and that proceeds would be used to repay debt………………………………………..Full Article: Source

APICORP unveils $150mln Petroleum shipping fund

Posted on 27 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (APICORP), the multilateral development bank owned by the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries (OAPEC), announced Monday the establishment of APICORP Petroleum Shipping Fund, a landmark $150 million Fund aimed at leveraging growth opportunities in the petroleum product tanker charter market. The government of Saudi Arabia owns a 17 percent stake in APICORP.
The first investment fund to be established by APICORP, the initiative is also the first fund in the region aimed at a specific vessel category. The Fund has acquired five medium range (MR) petroleum product tankers. ……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Egypt seeks up to $1 bln from debut Sukuk

Posted on 26 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Egypt plans to raise as much as $1 billion by June from the sale of its first Islamic bonds as the government anticipates a return to political stability will soften the blow of five credit rating cuts.
The cabinet has completed a draft law to allow sukuk sales, incorporating revisions by the ruling Freedom and Justice Party and Shariah scholar Hussein Hamed Hassan, said Ahmed El-Naggar, adviser to Finance Minister El-Morsi El-Sayyed Hegazi. Officials have compiled a list of about 25 projects that could be used as assets to back future sales, El-Naggar said in a phone interview on Feb. 21 from Cairo………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Egypt to join Islamic markets with bond

Posted on 26 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Egypt is planning to enter the Islamic finance markets for the first time by issuing a $1 billion Sharia-compliant bond. Morsi el-Sayed Hegazy, the Egyptian Finance Minister, said that the Government had already drawn up a list of infrastructure projects to be financed by the country’s first sovereign sukuk.
Under Hosni Mubarak, Egypt’s former leader, Cairo showed little interest in tapping the $300 billion sukuk market………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Directorate of NSs planning to launch Islamic bonds

Posted on 26 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Directorate of National Savings (NSs) has successfully achieved its annual investment target of Rs 224 billion investment and now planning to launch Islamic bonds. Talking to media person at Karachi office on Monday, Director General National Savings, Zafar M Sheikh, said that so far some Rs 275 billion of new investment had been attracted by the Directorate against the target of Rs 224 billion set for the current fiscal year 2012-2013.
“We have achieved this milestone with the support of energetic team and we are expecting more investment in the remaining period of current fiscal year,” he added. Talking about the performance of the Karachi region, he said that Karachi was still leading all offices with a share of Rs 127 billion in total new investment of current fiscal year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Meethaq launches Sharia compliant car finance

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Meethaq, the pioneer of Islamic banking in Oman from Bank Muscat, yesterday launched the first-of-its-kind Sharia compliant car finance product in the Sultanate based on the Islamic financing mode of Murabaha.
Sulaiman Al Harthy, Group General Manager (Islamic Banking), said: “Meethaq is proud to launch the innovative car finance as part of its focus to take the lead in offering 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………………………………………..Full Article: Source

BoP to launch Islamic banking

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Bank of Punjab is set to achieve another milestone when it launches Islamic banking in its operations. Apart from shoring up tangible support for the bank in the last four years, the Chief Minister also engendered an environment in the bank that ensured zero tolerance for corruption and eliminated government interference in the bank’s affairs. The Chief Minister Punjab has thus been principally responsible for restoring bank’s trust and goodwill amongst its customers.
In such an environment, backed by prudent financial management through a team of committed professionals the bank has grown from strength to strength during this time leading to Growth in deposits from Rs.164billion to Rs.266 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Summit Bank to launch Noor Bank

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The Summit Bank has planned to step in Islamic banking network with the launch of Noor Bank in the next few months, which is aimed at cashing in on the opportunities in commercial and domestic sectors with various Sharia-based products and services.
Summit Bank President and CEO Hussain Lawai on Saturday told Daily Times an interest-free and commercial bank is being planned to open countrywide with an exclusive banking model which caters exclusively to the business needs of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) of the country………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Islamic fund launched to aid smaller Tunisia firms

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Tunisia plans to provide Islamic financing to small and medium-sized enterprises via a tie-up between the public and private sectors, which could serve as a model for other Arab states trying to repair their economies after political turmoil.
The Tunis-based Bank of Financing Small and Medium Enterprises has agreed with the Jeddah-based Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), a private investment arm of the Islamic Development Bank, to aid smaller companies in Tunisia………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oman United Insurance plans to set up takaful company

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Oman United Insurance Co is planning to launch takaful operations and its board of directors has agreed in principal to incorporate a company to handle Sharia-compliant insurance products.
“The board of directors has agreed in principle to incorporate a takaful insurance company and suggested to discuss this in the annual general ordinary meeting scheduled on March 28, 2013 for consideration and approval,” the company said in a disclosure to the Muscat Securities Market on Tuesday………………………………….Full Article: Source

Dubai’s Dewa plans to raise $1 bln Sukuk, CEO Al Tayer says

Posted on 20 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Dubai Electricity & Water Authority plans to raise as much as $1 billion from the sale of Islamic bonds this month to refinance debt maturing in June, Chief Executive Officer Saeed Al Tayer said.
The state-owned utility, known as Dewa, mandated Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc, Citigroup Inc., Standard Chartered Plc, Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank PJSC, Emirates NBD Capital Ltd. and Dubai Islamic Bank PJSC, to help manage the sale, Al Tayer said. Meetings with potential investors will be held in London and Asia next week, he said…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Ahlibank plans Oman’s first Mena Islamic fund

Posted on 20 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Alibank is planning to launch the Sultanate’s first Islamic fund for the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region. The bank is waiting for regulatory approvals from both Central Bank of Oman and Capital Market Authority.
“We are planning to raise the fund from Oman and other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, using the facilities of our group institutions,” Abdulaziz al Balushi, chief executive officer of ahlibank, told Times of Oman. The corpus money raised by the fund will be invested predominantly in Oman, and a portion in the Gulf region…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Dubai investments to launch $272.5 mln sukuk

Posted on 19 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Dubai Investments, a holding company with interests in real estate, manufacturing and financial services, is preparing to launch an Islamic bond worth up to Dh1 billion ($272.5 million), its chief executive said on Monday.
The sukuk, which comes amid a period of high demand and a flurry of bond sales in the region, is to be launched by the end of April in the name of Dubai Investments Park, a major real estate development Dubai Investments owns on Dubai’s outskirts, Khalid Bin Kalban said. The proceeds will be used for expansion and to repay existing liabilities…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Columbia Asia issues RM300mln sukuk

Posted on 19 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Columbia Asia Sdn Bhd has issued a RM300 million sukuk (Islamic bonds) to partly finance its future capital expenditure, for working capital and the redemption of its existing syndicated financing facility.
This is the first time Columbia Asia has tapped the sukuk market for its funding requirements. The sukuk was issued in two tranches, with maturities ranging from five to 10 years to the identified placees on a private placement basis…………………………………….Full Article: Source

OSK-UOB launches latest fund - Dana Kidsave

Posted on 19 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

OSK-UOB Investment Management Bhd launched its latest fund, the OSK-UOB Dana Kidsave, which aims to maximise total returns through a combination of long-term growth of capital and current income, consistent with the preservation of capital.
OSK-UOB said the initial offer period of the fund, which comprised 500 million units, will be from today to March 10. “The initial minimum investment amount is RM1,000 and is suitable for investors who require investments that comply with the Shariah requirements, it said in a statement…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Islamic fund launched to aid smaller Tunisia firms

Posted on 15 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Tunisia plans to provide Islamic financing to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) via a tie-up between the public and private sectors, which could serve as a model for other Arab states trying to repair their economies after political turmoil.
The Tunis-based Bank of Financing Small and Medium Enterprises (BFPME) has agreed with the Jeddah-based Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), a private investment arm of the Islamic Development Bank, to aid smaller companies in Tunisia………………………………………..Full Article: Source

First Initiative to launch Islamic banking in Uzbekistan

Posted on 15 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

It had been reported that Muhammad Zubair Mughal, Chief Executive Officer of AlHuda Centre of Islamic Banking and Economics met with Ikram Ibragimov, the chairman of supervisory board of Hamkor Bank in Uzbekistan’s capital, Tashkent.
During the meeting, they had a detailed discussion on affairs of their mutual interest for the advancement of Islamic banking in Uzbekistan. According to Mr. Ikram Ibragimov, Hamkor Bank is the only bank is Uzbekistan which is working in collaboration with international organisation e.g. World Bank, Islamic Development Bank, Asian Development Bank, European Bank, KFW, Triple Jump and others………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Tunisia’s largest Sharia-compliant investment fund launched

Posted on 14 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

United Gulf Financial Services - North Africa has announced the launch of its ‘Themar Investment Fund’, the Islamic Sharia law compliant fund. It has a capital of TND50m (approximately $32m), to be financed by the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector and the Deposits and Securities Fund of Tunisia.
UGFS - North Africa is an investment company based in Tunisia. It is a subsidiary of the Bahrain-based United Gulf Bank, a member of the KIPCO Group. Themar is the largest Sharia-compliant Tunisian investment fund under the Tunisian Monetary Authority. The fund targets small and medium Tunisian institutions seeking financing in different business sectors that support the Tunisian economy. Priority is given to existing and restructured projects in urban areas. (Press Release)

Turkey’s Islamic banks consider subordinated sukuk issues

Posted on 13 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Strong investor demand and a need to improve capital adequacy ratios are causing Turkey’s Islamic banks to consider issuing subordinated sukuk, bankers and analysts say.
Ibrahim Oguducu, head of the financial institutions business at Bank Asya, the country’s largest Islamic bank, said longer-tenor subordinated sukuk would help balance mismatches between the maturities of banks’ liabilities and assets, while diversifying their funding sources………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Egypt farm bank launching retail Islamic services

Posted on 13 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Egypt’s main agricultural bank is launching Islamic retail services this month to meet increasing demand in rural areas, a bank official told Reuters.
“We are launching sharia-compliant retail banking this month with a portfolio of 50 million pounds ($7.5 million) and can raise that to 100 million” next June based on demand, said Abdel Rahman Al Kafrawi, head of Islamic transactions at Principal Bank for Development and Agricultural Credit (PBDAC)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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