Africa has long been the next big dream for Islamic finance, with its untapped wealth and strong Muslim majorities across multiple nations and regions: from the rich cultural backdrop of North Africa across the wealthy West and down to the opportunities of the sub-Sahara and South Africa.
But while there may be resources aplenty and opportunities galore, little headway has so far been made in truly tapping this exceptional market. In recent years however this has started to change, and 2013 saw a wave of activity driving what could be the start of a real revolution in Africa's Islamic finance aspirations.
Nigeria, one of the richest countries on the continent, is at the forefront of this: with its recent Osun State Sukuk and the newly launched leading the way for a wave of new activity.
In this special Islamic Finance news Supplement, we bring you a detailed look at the current state of the industry in Nigeria and the vast potential it holds: both as a domestic market and through its close and developing ties with the Middle East. The esteemed Nigeria ambassador to Qatar, Shuaib Adamu Ahmed, gives Islamic Finance news his uniquely valuable insights in an exclusive interview which we are proud to offer in our latest IFN Supplement.
Nigeria: Striving to be Africa’s Islamic finance hub
Nigeria has taken a number of steps to position itself as a frontrunner to become the Islamic finance hub for Africa, joining the ranks of Tunisia, Morocco, Kenya and South Africa in pushing forward legislation for Islamic finance and Takaful, and becoming one of the few African nations to issue Sukuk with the launch of the Osun State Sukuk last year. IFN Correspondent DAWUD ABDUS-SABOOR held an exclusive interview this month with SHU ADAMU AHMED, the Nigerian ambassador to Qatar, to discuss his personal experience, and opinions on the nation’s Islamic finance ambitions...