Jul 21, 2017
Emirates Islamic Bank has integrated blockchain technology into cheques to strengthen their authenticity and minimize potential fraud. Referred to as ‘Cheque Chain,” the bank, like others are looking at opportunities to increase efficiency, cut costs and improve customer services. New business opportunities are also presenting themselves,...
Feb 28, 2017
I got to add a new country to my list this week, as the invited speaker and moderator for this very interesting meeting organized by the World Bank Group, the WSF, and the Islamic Development Bank of Oman. Oman, like many of the GCC countries, is facing a transition from an oil dependent past to a future requiring greater diversity in its economy...
Feb 26, 2016
Islamic finance has considerably expanded with an increase of Islamic financial assets from $150bn in the mid-1990's to $1800bn at the end of 2013 ( Kuwait Finance House, 2014 ), with Islamic banks being particularly active in Middle Eastern countries and in Southeast Asia but also in Africa (Sudan, Nigeria). An emerging literature has...
Jan 04, 2016
Alternative financing and non-bank funding are no more strangers to Islamic finance since the concept of Islamic crowdfunding gained ground in the sector. One of the best examples is Singapore-based Shariah-compliant crowdfunding platform Kapital Boost. It is the first Islamic peer-to-business crowdfunding platform in Asia, launched in July 2015,...
Dec 01, 2015
From the smallest rural villages in Bangladesh to the large, bustling metropolitan centers of Cairo or Istanbul, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are the lifeblood of Islamic communities around the world, keeping local economies humming. I first became interested in the potential of leveraging Islamic finance to grow SMEs when I led a seminar...
Sep 02, 2015
Fatima Qasimi, Chief Executive Officer of Aseel Islamic Finance spoke to Zoya Malik about Aseel's corporate values and approach to operating in a competitive market and contributing to the future of the UAE's Islamic economy.
Mar 11, 2015
The Islamic finance industry has been growing rapidly in various regions, and its banking segment has become systemic in some countries, with implications for macroeconomic and financial stability. While not yet significant in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), several features make Islamic finance instruments relevant to the region, in particular the ability to foster SMEs and micro-credit activities. In a recent paper, we provide a survey on Islamic Finance in SSA where on-going activities include Islamic banking, sukuk issuances (to finance infrastructure projects ), Takaful (insurance), and microfinance. Should they wish to develop the market, policy makers could introduce Islamic financing windows within the conventional system and facilitate sukuk issuance to tap foreign investors. The entrance of full-fledged Islamic banks would require addressing systemic issues and adapting crisis management and resolution frameworks.
Jan 23, 2015
To me, this is the best way to get a boost from the WEF...I'm not at Davos, but I can blog through our kind friends at Davos...see the link attached! matt
Jan 14, 2015
Islamic finance is expected to expand substantially in 2015, from 2014’s total of $2.1 trillion to $2.5 trillion, according to figures released last week by the Al-Huda Centre of Islamic Banking and Economics. In 2011, the industry had assets of about $1 trillion. Islamic microfinance, the segment of Sharia-compliant services targeting clients at the base of the pyramid, only occupies a small slice of the pie, at 1 percent of all Islamic finance globally. However this uptick in Sharia-compliant finance, as well as encouraging recent support for the 650 million Muslims living on less than 2 dollars a day, suggest a rising tide for Islamic microfinance.
Dec 04, 2014
Please see the link for the official announcement from the Turkish government. 2015 should be a very exciting one for SME finance and SME development. Turkey has been a leader in the SME agenda of the G20 since its inception, and has served as co-chair of the SME finance subgroup since SME finance became a priority for the G20 in 2009. As a technical partner to the G20's Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion, the SME Finance Forum looks forwarding to supporting the Turkish agenda during this coming year. Our readers may also see that Turkey will be forming a new global body to represent SMEs' own interests during 2015. Unfortunately the working name for this entity is "SME Forum", which risks some brand confusion, for obvious reasons!. We'll also be working with our G20 colleagues on this, hopefully with some resolution that helps build and grow this very worthwhile complementary institution, while avoiding too many cases of mistaken identity. matt