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Bursa Malaysia and KRX: Support of the Malaysia International Islamic Financial Centre’s Initiative aims to boost Growth of Islamic Finance Market- Event 19.11.2009

The Korea Exchange (KRX) and Bursa Malaysia will be playing host to the Korean investment bankers, advisers, issuers and institutional investors at its inaugural KRX-Bursa Malaysia Islamic Capital Market Conference, which will be held on 19 November 2009 in Seoul, Korea. This conference which is co-organised in support of the Malaysia International Islamic Financial Centre (MIFC) initiative, aims to share Malaysia’s Islamic finance experience and to promote the opportunities in the Malaysian Islamic capital market landscape. This collaborative effort hopes to strengthen the growth opportunities of Islamic finance amongst the discerning Korean investors and issuers.

This conference is timely as there is a strong interest for Korea to grow the Islamic finance industry, following from the proposed liberalisation measures by the Korean government which are aimed to allow the issuance of Islamic bonds or sukuk as well as allow incomes from sukuk to be tax-exempted. These proposed laws are expected to be passed by the Korean government’s National Assembly later this year.

In conjunction with the KRX-Bursa Malaysia Islamic Capital Market Conference, delegates of the MIFC initiative, which comprises senior management of Bank Negara Malaysia (Central Bank of Malaysia), Securities Commission Malaysia and Bursa Malaysia, will be participating in the conference. Malaysia acknowledges Korea as a potential Islamic financial market and welcomes Korea’s participation in shaping the Islamic finance landscape together, via leveraging on Malaysia’s more than 30 years of experience in developing the world’s most comprehensive Islamic financial system.

Chief Executive Officer of Bursa Malaysia Berhad, Dato’ Yusli Mohamed Yusoff said, “We hope this conference will stimulate interest in the Shari’ah compliant products which are currently in demand from investors who are seeking returns from alternative and ethical investments. In addition, this visit by the delegates from the MIFC will pave the way for more opportunities to exchange ideas in Islamic finance and forge greater working relations between Korea and Malaysia for the interest of growing this important industry. We are confident that the Malaysian and Korean authorities as well as KRX and Bursa Malaysia would be able to leverage on our respective strengths in the establishment of an Islamic capital market in Korea.”

This KRX-Bursa Malaysia Islamic Capital Market Conference is expected to attract 200 participants and will provide a platform for all attendees to gain an insight into the outlook and trends of Islamic capital markets. Key discussion topics will centre around the liberalisation of Islamic financial markets, investment and business opportunities in Islamic capital market, the Islamic finance landscape and framework as well as the growth of Islamic finance products in Asia and globally.

Source: MondoVisione, 16.11.2009

Filed under: Asia, Events, Exchanges, Islamic Finance, Korea, Malaysia, News, Services, , , , , , , , , , ,

Islamic banks need to ‘revamp model’

Islamic banks in the Gulf Arab region need to adopt a new business model and take on more customers to weather the economic downturn, Ernst & Young’s head of Islamic finance said.

Islamic banks, many of which are investment houses, have been heavily exposed to the real estate market, which saw prices start to plummet at the end of last year.

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Islamic finance: Sukuk market on trial as Islamic bonds default, Euromoney July 2009

They channelled the wealth accumulated during the six year oil boom that ended in mid-2008 into regional real estate through private equity and asset management.

“They relied heavily on selling investments and placements and that business model is being questioned,” Sameer Abdi, who is also a partner at Ernst & Young, said.

The global liquidity constraints will force Islamic banks to look for new customers and sources of funding, including moving into corporate banking, trade finance and retail banking, Abdi said.

Islamic banks cater to investors who do not want to earn or pay interest, viewed as usury under Islamic law.

Some banks have already started to set up funds that enable retail customers to buy sukuk, or Islamic bonds, which in the past were mostly bought by regional banks and large Western financial institutions.

However, analysts have said that it will not be easy for Islamic banks to reduce their heavy exposure to real estate, as they are too small to move into such areas as regional infrastructure and energy projects, which require large investments.

Islamic and conventional banks in the region still have more of the financial crisis ahead of them, Abdi said. “The financial industry is not out of the woods in the Middle East at all, in fact we are still in the middle of our crisis,” he said.

“It’s going to take some support from regulators and governments to actually come out of the crisis, and that may be six to nine months away, at least.”

The restructuring of the debts held by troubled Saudi family groups Saad and Algosaibi could heavily impact many banks in the region.

The United Arab Emirates alone face at least $3bn in potential losses from their exposure to the two groups, an Emirati newspaper reported on Thursday.

Abdi also said corporate defaults of private sector companies in the region were very likely over the next six months.

Source:Gulf times, Reuters/ Manama, 06.07.2009

Filed under: Islamic Finance, News, Services, , , , , ,

Singapore’s Take on Islamic Finance

Singapore’s plunge into the Islamic finance scene did not come as a surprise to many in the industry. Seeing the Islamic finance industry take-off in Malaysia and with Hong Kong and Indonesia playing catch up, Singapore’s obvious move was to take on this ethical form of financing with formidable force. Despite being the first Asian country to fall into a recession, which prompted the government to declare the situation as the worst ever for it, the Lion City was still optimistic about launching its first Sukuk at a signing ceremony last month. Eureka – Islamic_Finance_News article

Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) managing director Heng Swee Keat described the Sukuk as the Shariah-compliant equivalent of Singapore Government Securities (SGS) and said it was of the highest credit standing. He assured investors that it would be given equal regulatory treatment as SGS, such as qualifying as an asset in the computation of capital and liquidity requirements, and as eligible collateral for tapping MAS’ liquidity.

“MAS is committed to the facility, issuing to meet the needs of financial institutions that are carrying out or plan to carry out Shariah-compliant activities in Singapore, as this will strengthen their ability to meet their capital and liquidity requirements.” He added.

Research and consulting firm Cerulli Associates released a report recently on the Islamic finance industry in Singapore, focusing on the Islamic funds available in the republic. According to it, Hong Kong and Singapore have been financial services hub rivals in Asia and their competition has now extended to Islamic finance. The report states that the Islamic finance is not to cater for their relatively small Muslim populations, but rather to encompass all areas of financial services as well as attract the petro-dollars from the Middle East.

Describing Hong Kong’s and Singapore’s effort as wholesale as opposed to Malaysia’s and Indonesia’s “more retail approach”, Cerulli said the Singapore government had decided several years ago that as trade with its Middle East counterparts increased, there would be a need for an Islamic finance industry. Its Middle East trade doubled to US$37 billion in four years to the end of 2007.

“MAS has been proactive in trying to create a level playing field for the conventional and Islamic approaches – in 2005, for example, it remitted the additional stamp duties that Islamic financing arrangements on property were incurring, and allowed banks to offer Murabahah financing,” the report stated.

Cerulli added that income tax and goods and services tax (GST) treatments for Shariah-compliant financing arrangements and Sukuk were clarified and given a level playing field as conventional products. “Retail investors in Murabahah are now given the same regulatory protection under Singapore’s Bank Act as any conventional depositor. And a 5% concessionary tax rate was announced in February 2008 on income derived from qualifying Shariah-compliant financial activities, including lending, fund management, insurance and reinsurance.”

Cerulli noted that the significant step in Singapore’s Islamic finance push came with the formation of the Islamic Bank of Asia (IB Asia) in June 2007. Singapore’s largest bank, DBS, holds the majority share in the bank together with Middle East investors. IB Asia has since opened a representative office in Bahrain. It focuses on Shariah-compliant commercial banking, corporate finance, capital market and private banking services.

According to Cerulli, the Sukuk issuance working on reverse inquiry that would be issued based on the needs of the republic’s financial institutions could boost the development of Islamic finance. However it would not be the republic’s first issuance as there have been several other issuances such as the MBB Sukuk Inc established by Maybank that raised US$300 million two years ago.

Cerulli observed that Singapore has its own Shariah index, the FTSE SGX Asia Shariah 100 Index, which is designed to be used as a basis for exchange-traded funds and over-the-counter trading instruments although it maintained that none have yet been launched. “There are currently six managers with Shariah funds registered in Singapore who are collectively responsible for assets worth about US$470 million, although this figure was somewhat higher prior to the current financial crisis.”


Click on the image for an enlarged preview

Shariah-compliant funds have also found a place in Singapore. Cerulli states that NTUC Income, a cooperative insurance society and a leader in life and general insurance with more than 1.8 million policyholders, currently offers the republic’s two largest Shariah funds.

The Amanah Bond Fund is managed by RHB Investment Management and CIMB-Principal Asset Management. It had US$157 million under management at the end of October last year. The other fund is NTUC’s Amanah Equity Fund, described by Cerulli as a global passive product, which is managed by State Street Global Advisers and has US$164 million under management. NTUC also offers a Takaful fund, jointly managed by NTUC Income and Wellington International Management with US$55 million under management.

Cerulli’s report also notes that other local players offering funds include UOB Asset Management, Singapore Unit Trusts (SUT) and Swiss-Asia Financial Services. UOB Asset Management offers the Afdaal Asia Pacific Equity Fund, for which CIMB-Principal Asset Management is the advisor. SUT, a member company of Malaysia’s Permodalan National Berhad (PNB) Group, has two Shariah-compliant funds: the Ethical Value Fund and Ethical Growth Funds, both being global equity products; while Swiss-Asia Financial Services launched its first Shariah fund, an absolute return Asian equity product named the Mashriq Fund, in July 2006.

According to Cerulli, the largest Shariah-compliant investment product sold in Singapore to-date was by a group called Pacific Star Investment and Development, which sold the now closed Baitak Asian Real Estate Fund at US$600 million. On offshore funds, Cerulli states that the available Shariah-compliant funds from the offshore managers are the DWS Noor range, including an Asia-Pacific equity fund, China equity fund, Global select equity fund, Japan equity fund and a precious metals securities product. “All are sold in Singapore (though they are domiciled in Ireland), as are CIMB Islamic’s Asia-Pacific equity fund and several HSBC products, domiciled locally under the HSBC-Link Ethical brand,” it added.

Source: Eurka Hedeg, Islamic Finance News, 22.04.2009

Filed under: Asia, Banking, Indonesia, Islamic Finance, News, Services, Singapore, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Challenges and opportunities for Islamic finance; BMB Islamic UK

Humayan Dar, chief executive officer of BMB Islamic UK, discusses new developments in Shar’iah-compliant finance.

BMB Islamic was founded in 2007 in London to provide Shar’iah advisory and structuring services. It enlists Shar’iah scholars and Islamic financial consultants to guide investors, lawyers and other investment professionals.

What new developments are taking place in Islamic finance?
There is little in the world of conventional finance that Islamic finance cannot replicate – whether in terms of financial instruments or funds. Sukuk — similar to bonds — are of course very well established now, and going forward it will be interesting to see which jurisdiction, whether Malaysia or the Middle East, will evolve as the dominant one for issuance and trading. But even sophisticated fund structures, such as private equity, hedge funds or specialist funds, are being set up so they are Shar’iah-compliant. We, at The BMB Group, have recently formed a private equity joint venture with Emerging Markets Partnership (EMP) to invest in emerging markets. BMB Islamic is also helping an investment bank to set up a Middle East infrastructure.

What about regional cooperation?
On February 18, The BMB Group formed a partnership with the International Zakat Organisation (IZO) to set up and manage a 2 billion Malaysian ringgit Global Zakat and Charity Fund, which will manage zakat (the act of giving alms to the poor) and other charitable funds to alleviate poverty in the 57 states which are members of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference. It is a long-awaited initiative. There has been inevitably a huge emphasis on Shar’iah-compliance in Islamic banking and finance, but the announcement of a Global Zakat and Charity Fund is the beginning of a new Islamic financial trend, which favours social responsibility and community development.

Will there be a resolution of what seems to be conflicting jurisdictions and centres for Shar’iah interpretation, and also competing centres for Islamic business?
In Malaysia there is strong inherent demand for Islamic products and the country has rapidly developed as a centre for Islamic finance. Perhaps most importantly, the government has provided institutional support, particularly through Bank Negara Malaysia (the central bank) but also through favourable legislation and tax treatment, for Islamic products. Middle Eastern financial houses have recognised this, and hence have entered the Malaysian market either directly or through partnerships and joint ventures. Malaysia is also correctly perceived as a gateway to other Asian markets.

Significantly too, Shar’iah-compliant financial products are now seen as competitive alternatives for non-Islamic people, who will happily buy them if they prefer the returns or their risk profiles compared with conventional products. Islamic finance is in the mainstream in Malaysia and is likely to become so elsewhere in the world — even Europe. Product standardisation will come through time, not by edict but through a wide acceptance of a particular norm.

What about Indonesia?
Indonesia, with its vast Muslim population obviously has tremendous potential. Once the institutional framework is in place — and already the government has issued its first sukuk — then the market should develop quickly. Perhaps the authorities need to be more like Malaysia and be more proactive and encouraging. Islamic finance will expand to countries and regions where there is a friendly regulatory environment, supported by a clear legal framework.

How will this year pan out, and what will be your main role?
This year will be tough, as it will be for all financial markets. However, pressure on government budgets, especially in the Middle East due to the lower oil price, means that some significant sukuk issuance is likely.

But, actually, the current conditions also offer the potential to take advantage of new opportunities and provide new products. With so much uncertainty, investors are seeking alternative havens for their capital, while depressed asset values of all kinds means there is a chance to build portfolios from a reasonable cost base. For instance, Islamic art funds are becoming popular.

An essential role for us is to monitor the Shar’iah-compliance of funds which are advertising and marketing themselves to Islamic customers. Integrity and credibility is all important.

Source: FinanceAsia.com, Rupert Walker , 26.02.2009

Filed under: Banking, Islamic Finance, News, , , , , , , , , ,

Malaysia raises profile as an Islamic fund hub

Malaysia now has more sharia funds than Saudi Arabia, but is still second in terms of assets under management. Malaysia’s efforts to promote itself as a global Islamic investment hub are paying off.

The country has overtaken Saudi Arabia in terms of the number of locally domiciled sharia funds, and is second to the huge Middle East market in terms of sharia assets under management (AUM), based on data from financial services research firm Cerulli Associates.

As of November 2008, sharia funds domiciled and managed in Malaysia totalled 145, compared to just 131 in Saudi Arabia. These range from investments in money markets and sukuks (bonds) to regional and global equities.

Malaysia has, over the past few years, worked to establish itself as a centre for sharia fund manufacturing, in line with its efforts to promote itself as a global Islamic investment hub. Malaysia now possesses the most highly developed regulatory structure for Islamic finance in the world, according to Cerulli.

So far, Malaysia has attracted eight international sharia fund managers by offering a host of tax and other incentives.

However, in terms of sharia AUM, Saudi Arabia is still the clear winner worldwide. Sharia AUM in Malaysia has grown from $1.4 billion in 2003 to $4.6 billion in November 2008. That’s nevertheless just a fraction of Saudi Arabia’s $13.9 billion in sharia AUM. Malaysia’s sharia AUM is also small compared with the estimated $40 billion in AUM of conventional funds managed onshore.

“Malaysian-domiciled sharia funds are still unable to compete with Saudi funds in terms of asset size,” says Ken Yap, Singapore-based head of Asia-Pacific research at Cerulli.

To illustrate his point, Cerulli data shows that the AlAhli Saudi Riyal Trade Fund in Saudi Arabia is the world’s largest sharia portfolio, with $3.6 billion in assets. In contrast, Malaysia’s largest sharia portfolio — Public Ittikal Fund — has $421 million in assets.

“While the Malaysian sharia market has shown impressive growth, managers need to do more to build up assets in each of its sharia funds, rather than simply continuing to launch more funds,” says Shiv Taneja, London-based managing director at Cerulli. “This means marketing sharia funds to high-net-worth individuals and institutions, and working with the banks, including Islamic banks, to improve sharia fund distribution to the public.”

Saudi Arabia’s obvious advantage over Malaysia, Cerulli’s Yap notes, is the deep pockets of its institutional, high-net-worth and retail investors.

In Malaysia, the focus has been mostly on retail investors — understandably so because they are an easy target for the asset management arms of banks, for example. Asset management companies with a conventional funds business in Malaysia are also setting up sharia units and they are targeting existing clients.

“The sharia funds in Malaysia are focused more towards the retail client base, which needs more variety and, thus, fund managers need to launch more funds. In Saudi Arabia, the funds are focused more towards the wholesale client base,” says Trica Sum, a Singapore-based analyst at Cerulli.

Both Saudi Arabia and Malaysia are capable of attracting and managing offshore funds, but the Gulf state has done more to cultivate that market over the years.

Cerulli’s Yap believes that in the near-term the potential for sharia AUM growth in Malaysia still rests with the retail market. Over the long-run, however, he says there is strong potential for growth in the offshore market of sharia firms in Malaysia, the demand from institutional investors and pension funds in Malaysia, and in new businesses from new Islamic fund management company license holders.

Malaysia’s Securities Commission has awarded eight foreign Islamic fund management licenses to Aberdeen Islamic Asset Management, BNP Paribas Islamic Asset Management, Nomura Islamic Asset Management, Kuwait Finance House (Malaysia), DBS Asset Management, CIMB-Principal Asset Management, Global Investment House and Reliance Asset Management.

The Malaysia government allows 100% foreign ownership of Islamic fund management companies, in line with its bid to attract more key fund players to the country. The incentive is part of ongoing liberalisation measures in Malaysia’s capital market as well as being aimed at complementing the broader Malaysian International Islamic Finance Centre (MIFC) initiatives of positioning the country as a hub.

Islamic fund management companies are allowed to invest all their assets overseas and will be given income tax exemption on fees received until 2016. They will also be able to tap into M$7 billion ($2.1 billion) in seed money from the Employees Provident Fund, the national pension fund for the private sector in Malaysia. Tax incentives are also being offered to existing stockbrokers that set up Islamic subsidiaries.

Cerulli estimates that global sharia fund assets totalled around $35 billion in October 2008 and had been growing at 23% over the past five years, well ahead of conventional mutual funds. Although this rate is expected to ease during the course of the global financial crisis, the firm believes Islamic finance has only started to take root in many Muslim nations and has plenty of room for expansion.

Source:AsianInvestor, 19.02.2009

Filed under: Islamic Finance, Malaysia, News, Services, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Islamic Finance Shows Resilience As London Consolidates Position As Key Western Centre

The global market for Islamic financial services rose by 37% to $729bn at end-2007. In 2008, IFSL’s Islamic Finance report notes that the industry has felt the influence of the credit crunch and downturn in the global economy – Sukuk issuance has more than halved and the value of equity funds has fallen. Islamic banks, however, have been less affected than many conventional banks as they are prohibited from activities that have contributed to the credit crunch, such as investment in toxic assets and dependence on wholesale funds.

London has been consolidating its position as the key western centre for Islamic finance in 2008. Two Islamic banks, Gatehouse Bank and European Finance House, have been granted licences bringing to five the number of fully Sharia compliant banks in the UK. Principal Insurance became the first Shariah compliant independent company authorised to offer Takaful to UK residents. In capital markets, four new exchange traded funds and two new equity funds were launched.

IFSL’s report indicates that the UK’s offering includes a total of 22 banks, far more than in any other Western country. Professional services are provided by 18 law firms and the Big Four accounting firms. A cumulative total of 18 Sukuk issues raising $10bn have been listed on the London Stock Exchange, second only to Dubai. With 55 institutions offering educational and training products in Islamic finance, the UK has more providers than any other country worldwide.

Duncan McKenzie, IFSL’s Director of Economics said “The UK has benefitted considerably from supportive government policies intended to put Islamic services on the same footing as conventional services. Evidence of London’s growing role in Islamic finance is shown in the UK being the only western country to feature prominently, 8th with assets of $18bn, in a global ranking of Sharia compliant assets by country.”

Sir Andrew Cahn, UK Trade & Investment’s Chief Executive Officer said: “Despite its origins overseas, Islamic finance has found a natural home in the UK. Though no sector is immune to the global financial crisis, Islamic finance has shown great resilience. It is important we continue to work with our Islamic finance partners to maintain our position as the leading western centre for Islamic finance service providers.”

Source: Mondovisione, Exchange News 09.02.2009

Filed under: Islamic Finance, News, , , , , , , , , ,

Islamic Finance Faces Legal Challenges

Some are claiming that greater use of Islamic finance could have averted, or at least minimised, the global financial crisis. However, the sector has potential problems of its own, which may become apparent in 2009 as the real economy in most countries starts to suffer.

The musharakah contract, in which a bank acts as a partner in a business interest, could potentially expose institutions to legal action. The bank is likely to be involved in management decisions, and it could be vulnerable if business is conducted improperly.

“In the case of negligence or misconduct, the Islamic bank will be liable for the capital of musharakah,” said Dr Sabir Muhamed Hassan, governor of the Central Bank of Sudan, speaking in Malaysia last month. “Modern insolvency laws in some countries impose liability on the officers and directors for actions taken on the eve of insolvency.”

The application of insolvency laws will be vital in determining whether more complex Shariah compliant derivatives work. Securitisation is permitted under Islamic guidelines, but the difficulty comes in proving that a particular transaction is a ‘true sale’, in which risk has been completely transferred.

There were also contracts in the past which did not make it clear whether in the event of an issuer’s insolvency its sukuk holders would have a claim to the sukuk assets, or only the income from those assets, which would probably have ceased by that stage. However, guidelines from the Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB), an international standards board, have since stated that sukuk holders should have a claim on the assets held in the investment vehicle.

“I actually think the next few years will be very difficult for the Islamic finance industry from a litigation perspective,” says Hari Bhambra, a lawyer who has worked on Islamic finance regulations for the UK Financial Services Authority and Dubai Financial Services Authority, and is now a senior partner at consultancy Praesidium. “It’s not quite clear whether some of the elements of the Islamic structure have legal force, so I think they will be tested.”

So far, few Islamic finance contracts have been taken through the courts, but she says that the experience in the UK has not been encouraging. Judges have ruled that customers have limited rights to pull out of a contract if they are given information about the structure of a product and the reasons why it is Shariah compliant.

Bhambra says: “But in market practice, customers are given a product, it’s got a fatwa stamped on it, so it’s been approved. There’s usually little information about why.”

She calls for increased disclosure of fatwa details, particularly since some Islamic finance products with the same name could differ vastly from country to country.

This would also make Shariah scholars more accountable for their decisions. Sheikh Muhammad Taqi Usmani, chairman of the board of scholars at think tank AAOIFI (the Accounting and Auditing Organisation for Islamic Financial Institutions), is widely credited with contributing to a slowdown in sukuk issuance, after he announced in November 2007 that 85% of sukuk in existence were not Shariah compliant because they included repurchase agreements. Investors in and issuers of Islamic products currently run the risk that the scholar who approves their structure could change his mind a few years later, a situation in which they have no legal recourse.

An economic slowdown and the possible end of the Gulf real estate boom are likely to create conditions under which many of these structures will be tested. If any widely used structures are found to fail under the stress, 2009 could be a painful year for Islamic finance.

Source: AsianBanker, Daniel Stanton, 17.12.2008

Filed under: Banking, Islamic Finance, Malaysia, News, Risk Management, , , , , ,

Islamic Financing in Latin America: Brazil & Malaysia

Investment opportunities in Islamic markets, basic concepts of Islamic finance and the importance of regulator agencies in developing these markets were among the main topics of the fifth edition of “The Islamic World’s Financial and Capital Markets: Opportunities and Challenges.” Brazil’s Securities and Exchange Commission (CVM) and the Brazilian Securities, Commodities and Futures Exchange (BM&FBOVESPA) sponsored the conference, which took place on December 8th.

Mercado Financeiro Islamico – ABC do Brasil 12.2008

Islamic Finance in Asia: MALAYSA the Islamic Finance Hub

Malaysia Opportunities in Islamic Finance – Bank Negara 12.2008

Islamic Finance Defined and Market Review – HSBC 12.2008

In his opening remarks, CVM Director, Sergio Weguelin, highlighted the importance of establishing a dialogue between market participants with the goal of bringing our two different systems close together. “These are two financial cultures that have much to offer to each other. (Islamic finance) has grown 15% annually, according to IOSCO (International Organization of Securities Commissions,)” he said. Weguelin added that “a larger incorporation by the traditional financial system of concepts that guide Islamic practices, such as the requirement to share risks, would have minimized the abuses that led to the subprime-mortgage crisis.”

BM&FBOVESPA’s International Director, João Lauro Amaral, highlighted the growth potential pf this market in his presentation. “Today the Exchange only has 30 non-resident investment accounts from the Middle East or other Islamic countries, mostly from the United Arab Emirates, which shows the potential we have for developing the growth between our markets,” he said, referring to the participation of Islamic investors in emerging markets such as Brazil.

Banco ABC Brasil S.A.’s International Department Director, Angela Martins, explained principles and characteristics of Islamic finance, such as the concept of Sukuk – “a certificate issued under Islamic law, backed by a contract accepted by Shariah law,” she said. She also explained that money in the Muslim world is not viewed as a commodity, but “as means to add value, without which one would not be able to generate wealth,” she said.

The Vice-President of Global Capital Markets at HSBC in New York, Alexei Remizov, highlighted the importance of the Islamic finance industry in the Persian Gulf countries. Nik Ramlah Mahmood and Kris Azman Abdullah, Directors at Malaysia’s financial regulator agency, discussed Islamic capital markets in Malaysia, and Anthony Saint, with London’s Gatehouse Bank, discussed operations of Islamic banks in the U.K.

Source: Mondovision, 13.12.2008

Filed under: Banking, BM&FBOVESPA, Brazil, Exchanges, Islamic Finance, Library, Malaysia, News, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,