Latest News - Sunday, 25 September 2016
This Week’s Newsletter
This is a free content. Click title to see the full news. Daily Cover Story - IFN weekly market roundup: 17th – 23rd September 2016
This week, we see interesting developments in the global Islamic finance market, from the active sovereign and corporate Sukuk markets to the vibrant banking and finance segment, and also Takaful and asset management, as well as the marketplace and...
Japan has had a tough few decades since the stock market crash of 1990, with slow domestic growth and a stagnant economy. Its domestic woes...
Editor's Note
Weak domestic growth and a sluggish economy have pushed Japan to hunt for diversification and investments abroad –...
Wednesday, 21 September 2016
Volume 13 Issue 38
E.g., 09/25/2016
E.g., 09/25/2016

Daily News Briefs

MALAYSIA: The Employees Provident Fund (EPF), which is launching its Simpanan Shariah in early 2017, saw an increase in transactions via its online platform during the second quarter, according to a statement. The usage of i-Akaun increased 44.26% from 3.33 million in the second...


EGYPT: Capital Intelligence has affirmed the National Bank of Egypt’s long-term foreign currency rating (FCR) at ‘B-’ and the short-term FCR at ‘B’, with a stable outlook, according to a statement.


INDONESIA: Bank Muamalat Indonesia and the Shariah units of members of the Association of Regional Development Banks have agreed to provide a 14-year syndicated Murabahah financing facility worth IDR834 billion (US$63.72 million) for the toll road development project connecting...


MALAYSIA: Malaysia’s leadership in Islamic finance is viewed as a catalyst for environmental, social and governance (ESG)-driven investment, according to RAM Ratings in a statement. The rating agency noted that Malaysia has the ecosystem needed to support the growth of Islamic...


MALAYSIA: Bank Negara Malaysia and its wholly-owned subsidiary MyClear have launched the Real-time Gross Settlement Debt Securities Depository (RENTAS) system, which would modernize Malaysia’s financial market infrastructures to support the settlement of wholesale payments and...


MALAYSIA: The Alliance Financial Group (AFG) has announced a proposed corporate reorganization exercise whereby AFG’s listing status will be assumed by its wholly-owned subsidiary, Alliance Bank Malaysia. According to a statement, Alliance Bank is the holding company for...


UK: The Islamic Finance Council (IFC) and the International Shariah Research Academy for Islamic Finance (ISRA) will hold a workshop in London on the 26th October. Themed ‘Is the Current Model of Shariah Governance Fit for Purpose?’, the event will include the launch of the...


PAKISTAN: The Pakistan Credit Rating Agency has assigned Pak Qatar Family Takaful with the insurer financial strength rating of ‘A’, which denotes a strong capacity to meet policyholder and contract obligations, according to a statement. The rating reflects the sustained market...


UAE: Abu Dhabi Financial Group (ADFG), which is planning to set up an Islamic bank in partnership with GFH, has appointed Dr Saleh Al Hashemi as the managing director and CEO of Integrated Capital, the group’s capital markets business, according to a press release. Dr Saleh will...


EGYPT: Islamic International Rating Agency has reaffirmed Al Baraka Bank Egypt’s international scale ratings at ‘B-/B’ and national scale ratings at ‘A-(eg)/A2(eg), with a stable outlook. According to a statement, the fiduciary score has been assessed in the range of ’66-70’,...


SAUDI ARABIA: Fitch has affirmed the long-term issuer default ratings (LTIDRs) of 11 banks in Saudi Arabia and downgraded the viability ratings (VRs) of two of the reviewed banks – Riyad Bank and Arab National Bank (ANB) – to ‘bbb+’ from ‘a-‘, according to a statement. The...


MALAYSIA: Malaysia’s second-largest pension fund, Kumpulan Wang Persaraan (KWAP), plans to increase allocation for alternative investments by 50% starting next year, Bernama quoted the fund’s CEO Wan Kamaruzaman Wan Ahmad as saying. KWAP, which aims to become a fully-fledged...


OMAN: Bank Dhofar, which operates Maisarah Islamic Banking Services, has announced that the subscription for its rights issue will begin on the 5th October until the 19th October 2016, and the trading period will begin on the 2nd October until the 16th October 2016, according to...


GLOBAL: The International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC) has signed an MoU with the Indonesia Commodity & Derivatives Exchange (ICDX) to provide a Shariah compliant pre-export warehouse financing facility worth US$50 million to Indonesian tin smelters and buyers...


IVORY COAST: International law and tax experts CMS have signed on as an executive partner for the Africa Islamic Finance Forum to be held in Ivory Coast on the 17th and 18th October. Fully supported by the government, the high-level forum will gather some of the most influential...


KENYA: The Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) of Kenya is working on introducing Shariah compliant student financing in a bid to support and cater to the educational needs of a growing number of Muslim students joining local universities, according to Hivisasa. Charles Ringera...


INDONESIA: Bank Muamalat Indonesia (BMI) expects to see its capital adequacy ratio increase to 18% from 13% as three of its biggest shareholders, the IDB, Boubyan Bank Kuwait and Atwill Holdings, are set to inject capital worth IDR2 trillion (US$152 million) to the Islamic bank...


SAUDI ARABIA: Following an MoU signing and a trial run launched last June, Al Rajhi Bank and the Real Estate Development Fund (REDF) are set to launch an accelerated financing program in the next few days, reported Alriyadh. The new scheme aims to expand state-subsidized finance...


IRAQ: Hoshyar Zebari, the finance minister of Iraq, was voted out of office by the country’s parliament on the 21st September over allegations of corruption and mismanagement. According to Wall Street Journal, Hoshyar has been under intense scrutiny by lawmakers over accusations...


SAUDI ARABIA: Solidarity Saudi Takaful has received the approval from the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency for the appointment of Badr Khalid Al Anzi as the company’s new CEO, according to a bourse filing. Badr takes over from Jerais Abdulaziz Al-Jeraisy, who will step down from...


IN THIS WEEK’S ISSUE

Case Study

  The Indonesian corporate Sukuk market was recently revived with a IDR120 billion (US$9.11 million) Sukuk Mudarabah issuance from HK Realtindo (HKR). Speaking to Taufik Hendra Kusuma, the director of finance and human capital,...

IFN Country Analysis

The UAE is one of the top Islamic finance markets of the world but even so, Shariah compliant financial activities have taken a backseat as the region wrestle with tough economic conditions. VINEETA TAN casts an eye on the development of...

Sovereign Sukuk

The sovereign Sukuk space was rather quiet the past week, without any major announcements in the market. Three Asian countries, however, kept the flow going with short-term issuances. DANIAL IDRAKI brings you the usual updates. ...

IFN Sector Analysis

Across the Middle East and Asia, the Shariah compliant financial landscape has seen interesting momentum in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) activity in recent times, especially on the back of lower oil prices. DANIAL IDRAKI provides an...
 

IFN Reports

Turkey’s return to the international Sukuk market with a US$1 billion issuance in June 2016 clearly signals its growing drive to further tap the Islamic financial market. The increasing number of participation banks in the...

The UK is hoping to internationalize Islamic finance through its largest financial commitment via Prosperity Funds to sustainable projects in Malaysia, a move likely to spur Shariah compliant cross-border flows. VINEETA TAN...

The Islamic banking industry in Pakistan has progressed considerably since its introduction to the South Asian nation, with its share reaching almost 12% of the overall banking industry in terms of its asset size. The branch...

Fresh from the successful issuance of sovereign Sukuk by three African nations in recent times, Africa continues to make waves in the Islamic finance industry as a potential growth region. This time, it seems, that Africa is...

The penetration of Islamic finance in Kenya is currently estimated at just 2%, despite a potential domestic market of 4.3 million — or 11% of the total population. And although the sector has seen steady growth with some...

The sovereign Sukuk space was rather quiet the past week, without any major announcements in the market. Three Asian countries, however, kept the flow going with short-term issuances. DANIAL IDRAKI brings you the usual updates....

VINEETA TAN brings you an exclusive look into an upcoming new Islamic private equity fund — only the second in Brunei Darussalam.  To be launched in collaboration with the Bruneian Ministry of Finance, Japan’s SBI...

BRUNEI: A new Islamic private equity fund – only the second in Brunei Darussalam – will soon come to market, IFN can confirm. To be launched in collaboration with the Bruneian Ministry of Finance, Japan’s SBI Holdings and the...

The growth trajectory of the re-Takaful industry has always gone hand in hand with that of Islamic insurers’ momentum in capturing the market share. However, the re-Takaful industry in the MENA region has not enjoyed the same...

The Islamic financial markets over the past week have been relatively quiet as the Muslim world came together to celebrate one of the holiest celebrations of the year – Eid Al Adha. Activities in the Middle East were particularly...

Features

Mankind has been adopting, experimenting and evolving various economic models around the globe, throughout history, whereby we have seen the rise and fall of socialism and capitalism. What is the most productive and fair economic...

Markets in the Middle East are having a growing trend of mergers between Islamic financial institutions and also new players entering into the Islamic finance market. In the first half of 2016; the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt...

Tunisia is conducting major reforms aimed at consolidating the financial sector and codifying Islamic banking. Both the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank of Tunisia (Banque Centrale de Tunisie or BCT) are launching...

As Islamic finance has grown over recent years into a substantial financial industry in itself, some of the unexpected beneficiaries have been the offshore centers dotted around the world. Often the home of hedge funds,...

Striving to achieve sustainable economic growth, Sri Lanka is currently on the lookout for avenues to reach the next economic status. In that endeavor, it is observed that Islamic finance is one of the many avenues that are being...

Women in Islamic Finance

By Laura Elder, a cultural anthropologist who teaches in the Department of Global Studies at Saint Mary’s College in Notre Dame. Her primary research interests are global political economy, Islam and gender. She can be contacted...

Column

By Mohammed Khnifer, an Islamic debt capital markets banker at a supranational banking institution as well as an AAOIFI-certified Shariah advisor and auditor. There will always be an intense debate between the ‘Old Guards’ (...

By Daud Vicary, the president and CEO of the International Center of Education in Islamic Finance (INCEIF), The Global University of Islamic Finance. Once again, the last month has been a very busy period for me. This time of...

IFN Correspondents

  On the recommendations of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP), the Federal Board of Revenue has accorded tax neutrality to Sukuk by allowing certain tax exemptions that were earlier available only...

  In any given country, SMEs play a major role in its economy. They generally constitute the larger part of a country’s private sector. This is especially the case in developing countries.  According to the World...

  The honorable members of the Association for Development of Islamic Finance (ADIF) have agreed on the urgent need for new strategies and country-level approaches for developing the Islamic finance sector in Kazakhstan....

Islamic banking, the growing subsector of banking in Bangladesh, fared better compared to its conventional counterparts in almost all indicators. The recent Financial Stability Report released by the central bank of Bangladesh...

On the 2nd August, the House of Councilors adopted Law n° 59-13 modifying and completing Law n° 17-99 related to the insurance code introducing, for the first time, provisions concerning Takaful. This is considered to be the...

Shariah Pronouncement

Query:   A corporate entity, which is a customer of an Islamic bank, had deposited an amount in a term deposit account for a period of three years on the basis of Mudarabah. However, upon completion of one year it has...

Special Reports

BASHAR AL NATOOR writes that Brexit may introduce new players to compete with the UK in the Islamic finance footrace. The UK has played a central role in growing the global footprint for Islamic finance over the past several...

Islamic finance is a universal phenomenon today. The whole world has adopted it irrespective of ideological differences. Currently, it is not only the Muslims who use it, but non-Muslims demand it too. But the dilemma is to check...

The World Islamic Finance Forum (WIIF) kicked off in Karachi, Pakistan with a big bang on the 5th September. The high-powered conference was organized by the Center for Excellence in Islamic Finance (CEIF) established at the...

Statistics in 2015 for foreigners buying commercial real estate in the US will be upstaged by a bigger spike this year, according to Bloomberg.com. However, SHOEB M SHARIEFF points out that there are a few issues to be considered...

The Islamic banking and finance industry in Malaysia has been growing and has a wider presence in Malaysia based on the report released recently by Fitch Ratings. AHMAD MUKARRAMI and SYED MUHAMMAD NAJMI analyzes whether the...