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Islamic Finance Briefing - Archive | November, 2008

Islamic finance in the new global economic order.

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Theage.com.au: The world today faces extraordinary economic circumstances — a global financial crisis of a magnitude not seen since the Great Depression. A new global finance blueprint must emerge from this crisis.

The influences shaping this new blueprint will be different to those that shaped the post-World War II finance and capital-market era. The new influences will include the emerging dominance of China, India, the Middle East, ASEAN and South America….. Full Article: Source

BNP eyes Islamic revenue growth

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gulf-daily-news.com: French bank BNP Paribas yesterday said it wants to boost revenue from Islamic finance four-fold by the end of 2011 through expanding its regional footprint and use of complex corporate banking products.

“Derivatives, swaps and hedging tools are all much needed by the industry to develop,” BNP Paribas global head of Islamic banking Jacques Tripon said. Mr Tripon declined to disclose a target figure for growth in Islamic operations, but said the bank wants to grow Islamic operations in South East Asia and some Mediterranean countries….. Full Article: Source

Malaysia regulator adds to Islamic stocks list

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Btimes.com.my: Malaysia’s market regulator has increased the number of Islamic stocks listed on its exchange to 855, as the country tries to woo more investors who demand assets that comply with religious law.

The Securities Commission said 87 per cent of securities listed on Bursa Malaysia met Islamic law standards, which forbids activities such as interest-based lending, gambling, alcohol and tobacco, which are deemed unethical. Previously, 85 per cent of the securities were syariah-compliant….. Full Article: Source

Top 500 Islamic Financial Institutions

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Thebanker.com: As the banking industry descends into ever-deeper gloom, the more ethical, risk-sharing approach offered by the Islamic finance industry is attracting an increasing amount of attention. The Banker’s Top 500 Islamic Financial Institutions ranking lists the sector’s key players.

During the past four decades Islamic financial institutions have evolved from mere concepts into fully fledged realities. And in recent years there has been a new dynamism as this fledgling financial industry has proved increasingly attractive, not only to the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims but also to many others who are beginning to understand the unique aspects of Islamic finance….. Full Article: Source

Malaysia will continue to attract investments from Middle East

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Bernama.com.my: With many opportunities available to further develop the Islamic markets in the country, Malaysia will continue to attract an inflow of investments and funds from the Middle East, particularly Kuwait.

In stating this, Kuwait Finance House (Malaysia) Bhd (KFHMB)’s managing director Datuk K. Salman Younis said the funds financed viable manufacturing and services sector projects, ensuring continuous returns on a long-term basis….. Full Article: Source

UK emerges as global leader in Islamic finance education and training

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Ameinfo.com: The rapid growth of global Islamic Financial Services has created global demand for sector-specific skills that the industry is struggling to supply. ‘Growth in the industry is not being matched by a similar growth in human capital,’ says John Willsdon, Product Manager for the certificate in Islamic Finance at the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA).

‘There is a strong demand for courses that will allow employees to get up to speed and quickly.’ …. Full Article: Source

What it will take to lead the next generation of Islamic finance?

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Bi-me.com: Although Sharia forbids the kind of complex derivatives and opaque instruments which helped ignite the global financial meltdown, Islamic finance was nevertheless unable to escape the crisis because of its asset-backed nature. Falling real estate prices have hit the sector particularly hard, the DIFC Forum heard this week.

The potential for Islamic banking remains enormous, even in the Western world, where it can be marketed side-by-side with other “ethical” investments. But significant regulatory hurdles must be overcome in both the Muslim and non-Muslim world; and that will require action from both the industry and the regulators, themselves….. Full Article: Source

Malaysia’s Iskandar project shifts a gear

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Financeasia.com: On the southern tip of Malaysia, just across the Johor Strait from Singapore, is a land strip called Iskandar. Today home to the small city of Johor Bahru, Iskandar is slated to become the new heart of Malaysia.

At an initial cost of M$4.3 billion ($1.5 billion), the Iskandar project is currently the largest development project in Malaysia. The aim is to build a new manufacturing, economic and social hub for the country and Malaysia’s leaders are deploying their competitive advantages to make it a success….. Full Article: Source

Islamic banks sheltered from storm, says Moody’s

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Thenational.ae: Islamic banking institutions are well-positioned to weather the global financial storm, due to their reliance on religious principles that have given them a conservative investment strategy and prohibited them from investing in mortgage-backed securities, according to Moody’s, a ratings agency.

Islamic Banks, which prohibit the use of speculation and interest rates, are viewed by depositors as safer because they are less prone to the kind of complicated financial innovations that created the credit crunch…. Full Article: Source

MEPS to add foreign Islamic banks to network by second quarter

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Thestar.com.my: Malaysian Electronic Payment System (1997) Sdn Bhd (MEPS) will expand its reach by admitting foreign Islamic banks such as Al Rajhi Banking & Investment Corp (M) Bhd, Kuwait Finance House (M) Bhd and Asian Finance Bank Bhd into the shared ATM network by the second quarter next year.

According to chairman Michael J. Barrett, the move was in support of the national agenda for Malaysia to become an Islamic financial hub in line with Bank Negara’s Financial Sector Masterplan and to facilitate non-member banks/statutory bodies in offering value-added services to their customers….. Full Article: Source

Dow Jones launches Islamic ASEAN index

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Financialstandard.com.au: Dow Jones Indexes has launched the Dow Jones Islamic Market (DJIM) ASEAN Index - the first of its kind that represents the performance of Shari’ah-compliant companies in six of the 10 member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

The index currently includes Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. According to Dow Jones Indexes, the index is designed to serve as underlying for financial products such as exchange-traded funds (ETFs), or as a benchmark for actively managed mutual funds….. Full Article: Source

Moody’s assigns first-time IFSR of Baa2 to Qatar Islamic Insurance Company

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Ameinfo.com:Moody’s Investors Service has recently announced that it had assigned a first-time insurance financial strength rating of Baa2 to the Qatar Islamic Insurance Company ‘QIIC’.

Qatar Islamic Insurance Company ‘QIIC’ was created in 1995 and was one of the first Islamic insurance companies in the world. …. Full Article: Source

Back to the basics: What is Islamic Banking?

Posted on 28 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From PBS: I was reading an article about Islamic banking in Malaysia, and I was surprised to find out that these Islamic banks were affected little if any with this bad lending that is going on in U.S. and in the rest of the world. Do you know what Islamic banking is?

Paul Solman: I feel a longish answer coming on so if you’re not interested in the history of usury, then even you loyal readers may wish to skip today’s entry, or re-read a post from the past….. Full Article: Source

UAE Islamic banks to witness strong growth

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Business24-7.ae: Islamic banks in the UAE show huge potentials and may grow more than 20 per cent a year, said a senior executive from Ernst & Young.

“Islamic banks in the UAE have a lot of potential and I do see strong growth, very strong at least in the next 12 to 24 months. I wouldn’t be surprised if they grow in excess of 20 per cent a year,” Sameer Abdi, Partner, Ernst & Young Islamic Financial Services Group said….. Full Article: Source

London warms to Islamic finance

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Csmonitor.com: Using law changes and generous tax breaks, the British government is now attempting to transform London into the Western world’s center for Islamic finance. Conventional banks and financial institutions are also rolling out a range of Islamic finance products.

Globally, the market for Islamic financial services is estimated to have grown more than threefold over the past decade – from around $150 billion in the mid-1990s to $500 billion in 2006….. Full Article: Source

IDB sukuk to fight global turmoil

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Arabnews.com: The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) will issue Islamic bonds (sukuk) in order to collect funds from international market place in support of member countries affected by the global financial crisis, the bank’s President Ahmed Mohammed Ali said.

“IDB has set up a committee to study the various aspects and effects of the global financial crisis and identify resources to finance investment projects in Muslim countries,” the Saudi Press Agency quoted the IDB chief as saying….. Full Article: Source

Seize the chance, GCC investors told

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Tradearabia.com: GCC countries have been urged to “seize the day” and use their substantial liquidity to make strategic investments in leading global companies.

Speaking at the DIFC Forum, Sameer Al Ansari, executive chairman and chief executive of Dubai International Capital, said: “This is our moment and we should seize it. In the last five years, this region has accumulated a lot of reserves. Asset prices are falling by the day and we have a great opportunity to diversify, acquire and bring employment opportunities to the region….. Full Article: Source

DIFC forum addresses the role of Islamic finance

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gowealthy.com: A panel discussion on Islamic Finance that took place on the first day of DIFC Forum, the second major business conference in Dubai that forms part of DIFC Week, has stated that as the global economy creates a new financial architecture, incorporating lessons from the global financial crisis, Islamic banking could emerge as a role model because of its focus on ethical investments.

Participants in the session titled ‘What will it take to lead the next generation of Islamic Finance’ included Khalid Abdulla-Janahi, Group Chief Executive of Dar Al-Maal Al-Islami (DMI) and Chairman of Ithmaar Bank; Hari Bhambra, Senior Partner, Praesidium LLP; Prof. KC Chan, Hong Kong Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury; and Iqbal Ahmed Khan, CEO, Fajr Capital…. Full Article: Source

Islamic economics: What does it mean?

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Infoisrael.net: While the outside world hardly noticed, a significant and rapidly growing amount of money is now being managed in accord with Islamic law, the Shari’a. According to one study, “by the end of 2005, more than 300 institutions in over 65 jurisdictions were managing assets worth around US$700 billion to US$1 trillion in a Shari’a-compatible manner.”

Islamic economics increasingly has become a force to contend with due to burgeoning portfolios of oil exporters and multiplying Islamic financial instruments (such as interest-free mortgages and sukuk bonds)….. Full Article: Source

Dubai is facing serious financial problems

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Theaustralian.news.com.au: British Chancellor of the Exchequer Alistair Darling’s pre-budget report on Monday contained at least one item that raised not a flicker of attention at Westminster.

But it will have been keenly noticed far away in the Gulf: he has decided that Islamic bonds will not form part of the Government’s borrowing program in the near future….. Full Article: Source

Malaysian insurers face regulatory and competitive challenges

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Theasianbanker.com: Fitch Ratings has today published a special report on the Malaysian insurance sector, “The Malaysian Insurance Market: Survival of the Fittest”, providing an overview of the impending regulatory changes facing the industry, as well as an analysis of the competitive landscape.

The agency notes that these structural changes, coupled with the ongoing global financial crisis, could pose a significant threat to the more weakly capitalised players in the market. Fitch believes that it is likely that market consolidation will continue to occur, with the weaker insurers finding it increasingly difficult to compete. …. Full Article: Source

BBK eyes Islamic unit tie up with Shamil

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Tradearabia.com: Bahrain-based retail lender Bank of Bahrain and Kuwait (BBK) is considering merging its newly-launched Islamic bank with peer Shamil Bank or another bank, its chief executive said in remarks published on Wednesday.

“A merger would be good for the institution, combining expertise and financial strength in one institution … the process is under study, a merger could happen with another institution and not necessarily Shamil Bank,” Abdulkarim Bucheery told Al Watan newspaper….. Full Article: Source

Seera launches White Paper on Islamic banking

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Tradearabia.com: Seera Investment Bank BSC (Seera), a Shari’a compliant investment bank headquartered in Bahrain, has launched a White Paper on Islamic banking and investment in partnership with Dow Jones Private Equity, the leading provider of finance and investment data to the private equity industry.

The first in a series of thought-leadership reports was presented at the 15th Annual World Islamic Banking Conference (WIBC). Seera (formerly known as United International Bank) was the innovation sponsor of WIBC, which was held from November 23 to 25, 2008 at the Gulf Hotel, Manama, Bahrain….. Full Article: Source

Mortgage boost from new lender Abu Dhabi Finance

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Dailymail.co.uk: Abu Dhabi is set to launch a new mortgage lender backed by Mubadala, the government-run development agency, to revive the housing market as liquidity dries up during the credit crisis.

The new lender, Abu Dhabi Finance, will be a joint venture between Mubadala, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, Aldar Properties, Sorouh Real estate, and the Tourism Development and Investment Company….. Full Article: Source

Etihad raises $210m to buy new planes

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Albawaba.com: Etihad Airways has agreed aircraft financing facilities worth more than US $210 million to acquire two new Airbus A340-600 wide-body aircraft to add to its expanding fleet.

It has also mandated a new local bank to raise a further US $110 million under an Islamic financing facility. Al Hilal Bank, a newly established Islamic bank based in Abu Dhabi, will provide a 12-year Islamic finance lease for the purchase of the other A340-600 aircraft….. Full Article: Source

Credit crunch blow to UK Islamic property loan market

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Propertywire.com: The UK government has ruled out issuing Islamic compliant debt, or Sukuk, mainly because of the credit crunch.

It had been expected in Islamic finance circles that the government would approve Britain’s first Islamic debt instrument to meet the growth of Islamic finance in the country…. Full Article: Source

Islamic Banking in the Middle East and North Africa registers 10-15% growth over last decade

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Islamic finance has become a major global industry, with over 300 institutions currently involved in both Muslim countries and international markets. Globally, Islamic banking assets are estimated between US$600 billion and $650 billion and have registered a growth rate of 10-15% per year over the last decade, according to a new report, Islamic Banking in the Middle East and North Africa from Celent, a Boston-based financial research and consulting firm.

The Middle East is currently one of the most developed Islamic banking markets, with more than US$255.8 billion in Islamic banking assets. Over the last decade with the expansion of economies, this region has seen exceptional growth, both in terms of financial institutions providing Islamic products and services and assets under management. Furthermore, Islamic banking assets have grown more rapidly than conventional assets in the Middle East region. However, Islamic banking is not equally developed across all countries…… Full Press Release: Source

Experts predict mergers as meltdown set to impact Islamic finance industry

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Khaleejtimes.com: Islamic finance industry will be impacted by the global economic meltdown, but it could witness several mergers and acquisitions, industry experts said. The current turmoil offers Islamic finance industry an opportunity to transform to emerge as a role model for the global economy, said speakers at the at the DIFC Week panel discussions.

Khalid Abdulla Janahi, Group Chief Executive of Dar Al-Maal Al Islami (DMI) and Chairman of Ithmaar Bank, said Islamic finance banks should look at acquiring large conventional banks that would give them the ability to become leaders and innovators in the global economy…… Full Article: Source

Quo Vadis Islamic Finance

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Resourceinvestor.com: This article discusses current trends in Islamic finance, which accounts for more than $800 billion worth of assets worldwide. The industry faces a number of challenges, including economic and legal bottlenecks, banking concerns, and unharmonised financial regulations, but most of them arise from the industry’s infancy. Islamic finance’s long-term prospects seem promising.

The sukuk market has held its own amid groundswell concern about the credit crunch and dysfunctional money markets…… Full Article: Source

Islamic banks to keep growing despite difficulties

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Business24-7.ae: Islamic banking will continue to grow but at a slower rate as Shariah-compliant lenders face the same kind of problems that conventional banks are experiencing, be it global liquidity crisis or loss of consumer confidence, industry experts said at the DIFC Week.

“Conventional or Islamic banks – we all are in the same boat. In the next nine to 18 months we also have to face the problem of liquidity crunch. Moreover, we have to bring back confidence. That’s not easy and we will have to move fast to real economy,” said Khalid Abdullah-Janahi, Chairman, Ithmaar Bank, Group Chief Executive, DMI…… Full Article: Source

The heart of Islamic finance will continue to be the Middle East

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Ameinfo.com: The global liquidity crunch and a weighty exposure to real estate have impacted heavily on Islamic finance in the region but the Middle East is still ranked as the most important centre for Islamic banking in the world.

‘Whether for Islamic or conventional banks, lending has stopped and it is a myth that during this global crisis Islamic finance will not be affected,’ said Khalid Abdullah-Janahi, Chairman, Ithmaar Bank, Group Chief Executive, DMI…… Full Article: Source

HSBC sees Islamic assets rising to 20%

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Thestar.com.my: HSBC Bank Malaysia Bhd expects its Islamic assets to increase from the current 12% of total assets to 20%, according to deputy chairman and chief executive officer Irene M. Dorner.

“I see no reason for it not hitting 20%; this should come quite naturally,” Dorner told reporters after the official launch of HSBC’s Islamic outfit HSBC Amanah Malaysia Bhd yesterday…… Full Article: Source

Islamic banks warned

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gulf-daily-news.com: Central Bank of Bahrain Governor Rasheed Al Maraj emphasised that both the region and Islamic financing would suffer from the global turmoil.

The quote is from a former head of a conventional bank to explain why Western institutions got embroiled in the subprime market when they should have known better…… Full Article: Source

Norton Rose’s political investment pays off with Treasury Islamic bond

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Thelawyer.com: Advising HM Treasury on its first-ever Islamic bond issue is a choice mandate. For Norton Rose, besting Allen & Overy (A&O) and Denton Wilde Sapte makes the win even sweeter.

Norton Rose’s Islamic finance practice was almost a shoo-in for the role after the firm put in significant pro bono time and was last year the only one to be appointed alongside dozens of banks and other groups to the Islamic Finance Experts Group (IFEG)….. Full Article: Source

HK confident financial turmoil won’t derail Islamic banking plans

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Themalaysianinsider.com: The global financial crisis will not upset Hong Kong’s plans to become an Islamic banking centre as it sets its eyes on the China and the Middle East markets.

“Our priority is to push ahead with the development of an Islamic bond market. There should be no doubt about our determination to establish a platform for Islamic finance in Hong Kong,” Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) deputy chief executive Eddie Yue said today…… Full Article: Source

Islamic finance showing evolution and strong growth

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Bernama.com: Islamic finance has continued to demonstrate its evolution and strong growth during the challenging international financial environment, Bank Negara Malaysia governor Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz said Tuesday.

“Islamic finance has now become a new vehicle contributing to increasing the financial linkages not only within Asia but also with the rest of the world, thereby facilitating cross-border allocation of capital globally,” Zeti said…… Full Article: Source

DIFC Forum: Islamic finance can be a role model for the global economy

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Albawaba.com: As the global economy creates a new financial architecture, incorporating lessons from the global financial crisis, Islamic banking could emerge as a role model because of its focus on ethical investments.

This was one of the key messages that emerged from a panel discussion on Islamic Finance that took place on the first day of DIFC Forum, the second major business conference that forms part of DIFC Week, the Dubai International Financial Centre’s (DIFC) prestigious annual series of business events…… Full Article: Source

CIMA’s Islamic finance certificate to be offered in Arabic in partnership with TAGI Training

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Ameinfo.com: CIMA (Chartered Institute of Management Accountants) today announces its latest initiative in the development of qualifications in Islamic finance by signing a contract with the Jordan-based organisation TAGITraining to translate and deliver the CIMA Certificate in Islamic Finance in Arabic throughout the Arab speaking world.

This agreement highlights both organisations’ commitment to provide the financial, business and government sectors with the skills and knowledge required in this rapidly growing market. ….. Full Article: Source

A good time to take stock of Islamic finance: CBB

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

The GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) economies which were considered an oasis of calm in the ongoing global financial turmoil, the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September has pushed even the GCC to the looming economic risks, a senior official at the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB), said.

Rasheed M. Al Maraj, governor of the CBB, who along with Heng Swee Keat, governor of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, jointly opened the 15th Annual World Islamic Banking Conference (WIBC), said: “We have seen a vastly changed financial landscape and there is little doubt that the availability of funds and the costs of borrowing are being affected in all parts of the world.”….. Full Press Release: Source

For many Muslims, conventional loans can be a sin

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Minnpost.com: Seven years ago, staff at the Neighborhood Development Center made a realization. Plenty of Somalis and other Muslim immigrants had attended the St. Paul-based center’s trainings for small-business entrepreneurs — but in more than a decade, not one Muslim had ever taken advantage of the center’s small-business loans.

The reason? Islam forbids “reba,” or usury. To some, the term refers merely to excessive interest, but to others, it includes the payment of any kind of interest — making conventional bank loans a sin for them…… Full Article: Source

SEI launches South Africa’s first offshore multi manager Sharia funds

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Itinews.co.za: SEI, the U.S.-based manager-of-managers, has become the first global investment management firm to launch an offshore range of Shari’ah compliant (compliant with Islamic Law) investment funds for South African institutional and retail investors.

The four Shari’ah funds: the SEI Islamic US Equities Fund, the SEI Islamic European Equities Fund, the SEI Islamic Emerging Markets Equities Fund and the SEI Pacific Basin Equities Fund, are registered with the Financial Services Board and are designed to comply with Shari’ah laws whilst not compromising investment return potential…… Full Article: Source

CIMB launches Islamic product in Hong Kong

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Financeasia.com: CIMB Islamic yesterday launched a Commodity Murabahah Deposit product in Hong Kong, which will be available through the Hong Kong branch of its affiliate CIMB Bank.

The move expands Hong Kong’s nascent Islamic banking sector and allows for the opening of an Islamic interbank money market in the city…… Full Article: Source

Central Bank of Bahrain developes Islamic Sukuk liquidity instrument

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Menafn.com: To assist Islamic financial institutions here to overcome expected conflicts, the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) has developed an Islamic Sukuk liquidity instrument.

This is a repurchase agreement which has been designed to enable financial institutions to access short-term liquidity against government of Bahrain long and short term Ijara Sukuk, the Governor of the CBB Rasheed Al Maraj said during the 15th World Islamic Banking Conference (WIBC) here…… Full Article: Source

Value of Islamic banking to reach $1 trillion in 2010

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Saudigazette.com.sa: The financial institutions sector has grown and expanded significantly in recent years, he pointed out that the expected volume of Islamic banking during 2010 to increase at an estimated of $1 trillion, said Abdulrazak Elkhraijy, the head of the National Commercial Bank (NCB)Islamic Banking Development Group

He said some recent statistics in this area indicate that the number of Islamic financial institutions reached more than 300 institutions distributed in more than 75 countries, including 110 Islamic Takaful company and other Islamically-compliant investment funds that deal $1.3 billion worth in assets. In addition, it issues Islamic bonds during the current year worth $14.7 million…… Full Article: Source

Spotlight on Islamic equity investment

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gulf-daily-news.com: Seera Investment Bank launched a white paper on Islamic banking and investment in partnership with Dow Jones Private Equity at the WIBC. Seera, formerly United International Bank, a Bahrain-based Sharia-compliant investment bank, was the innovation sponsor of the event.

“The WIBC has emerged as a global forum for communicating the values of Islamic banking to a wider audience,” said Seera general manager and acting chief executive Abdulla Janahi….. Full Article: Source

EDC and ICIEC to provide Islamic credit insurance

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Tradearabia.com: The Dubai Export Development Corporation (EDC) and the Islamic Corporation for the Insurance of Investments and Export Credit (ICIEC) have agreed to provide high quality Islamic credit insurance services to support local exporters based in the UAE.

ICIEC is a member of the Islamic Development Bank Group (IDB) headquartered in Saudi Arabia…… Full Article: Source

IIB launches mortgage finance company in KSA

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Ameinfo.com: International Investment Bank (IIB), a globally focused Islamic investment bank based in the Kingdom of Bahrain, announced the launch of a mortgage finance company in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

IIB and its investors will own 65% of the venture while 35% has been subscribed by a regional commercial bank that will act as the technical partner…… Full Article: Source

Brunei: Order to expand and strengthen Islamic banking and Takaful

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Brudirect.com: By the consent of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam, the Ministry of Finance recently introduced the Islamic Banking Order 2008, aimed at expanding the Islamic banking sector in Brunei at the same time increasing the competitiveness among players by creating a level playing field as well as strengthening the supervision and regulation of Islamic banking activities.

This was announced by Pehin Orang Kaya Laila Setia -pato Seri Setia Hj Abdul Rahman Hj Ibrahim, Minister of Finance II, during his keynote address for the Sixth Brunei Roundtable held at the Empire Hotel and Country Club, yesterday…… Full Article: Source

Islamic banking giants honoured

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Tradearabia.com: Several top names in the Islamic banking sector were honoured at a glittering ceremony held as part of the 15th Annual World Islamic Banking Conference (WIBC 2008).

The winners were given the prestigious ‘Islamic Banking Awards’ last evening at an impressive gala dinner ceremony held at the Gulf International Convention Centre in Bahrain…… Full Article: Source

MSCI expands Islamic indexes

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Structuredproductsonline.com: Index provider MSCI Barra has extended its Islamic indexes family by expanding its Emerging Markets coverage to include Small Cap components and launching a further 16 frontier market country indexes.

The new indexes, which are designed to underlie financial instruments such as structured products and ETFs, will be available starting December 2, and include the MSCI Emerging Markets Islamic Investable Market and the Gulf Cooperation Council Countries Islamic Investable Market Indexes…… Full Article: Source

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