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AmTakaful Starts Family Takaful Business

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Points of Essence

  • Newest Takaful operator in Malaysia, AmFamily Takaful has commenced its family takaful business, making it the 12th licensee
  • The business is a JV between AmBank Group and UK’s Friends Life Group  

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 9 (Bernama) — AmFamily Takaful Bhd (AmTakaful), the 12th licensed takaful operator in Malaysia, has commenced a family takaful business.

A joint venture company between AmBank Group and Friends Life Group of the UK, AmTakaful is registered as a takaful operator by Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) to carry out a family takaful business with effect from Jan 9, 2012.

By combining the expertise of its shareholders AmBank Group and Friends Life Group, as well as Shariah principles and values, AmTakaful will be introducing a wide range of family takaful solutions to meet the evolving lifestyle needs of all Malaysians, it said in a statement.

Source: BERNAMA

Written by Suapi Shaffaii

January 12, 2012 at 10:39 pm

Posted in Islamic Financial Institutions

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HSBC Amanah To Issue Innovative Sukuk For Retail Investors

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Points of Essence

  • HSBC Amanah is mulling issuance of an innovative sukuk for retail investors this year
  • The planned sukuk is intended to increase presence in the bond market by retail investors 
  • With 15 branches so far in Malaysia and leveraging on its global group, the bank is poised to grow its offering of Shariah compliant products.

By Dalila Abu Bakar

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 10 (Bernama) — HSBC Amanah Malaysia Bhd, a subsidiary of HSBC Bank Malaysia, plans to introduce an innovative sukuk this year for retail investors to maintain HSBC’s position as a leading sukuk house.

“Malaysia is one of the deepest markets for Islamic bonds but we still do not have an active retail market.

“We need to launch a retail bond product so that the retail investors could share the sukuk pie,” chief executive officer Rafe Haneef told Bernama in an interview.

Rafe said Malaysia made up 60 per cent of the total global sukuk issuance last year but the Syariah bonds were subscribed mostly by institutional investors.

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Written by Suapi Shaffaii

January 10, 2012 at 10:14 pm

Posted in Islamic Financial Institutions

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New IFSB chief faces challenging task

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Points of Essence

  • The change of leadership at the Islamic Financial Services Board has set yet another challenge for the new chief to spearhead a greater inclusion of the global financial community in the sphere of Islamic finance
  • While his predecessor has successfully put in place the institutional workings of the IFSB, the new chief will need to command a greater authority and respect to bring Islamic finance in parallel with the global financial system.     

By MUSHTAK PARKER | ARAB NEWS

Published: May 8, 2011 19:39 Updated: May 8, 2011 19:39

Jaseem Ahmed officially took over at the beginning of this month as the new secretary general of the Kuala Lumpur-based Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB), the prudential and supervisory standard-setting organization for the global Islamic financial industry. He succeeds a prominent predecessor, Professor Rifaat Abdel Karim, who has been at the helm of the board for the last 8 years since it started operations in March 2003.

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Written by Suapi Shaffaii

May 9, 2011 at 10:29 pm

End of journey for Rifaat at the IFSB

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Points of Essence

  • There has been a shift of stewardship at the Islamic Financial Services Board since April this year.
  • An interview with the IFSB’s former Secretary General, Prof. Rifaat Abdel Karim, will shed some lights into the pioneering efforts behind the establishment of the IFSB and the challenges it faced to emerge a global Islamic financial authority.      

By MUSHTAK PARKER | ARAB NEWS

Published: May 8, 2011 19:39 Updated: May 8, 2011 19:39

Professor Rifaat Abdel Karim is the inaugural secretary general of the Kuala Lumpur-based Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB), the multilateral prudential and supervisory standard setting organization for the global Islamic financial services industry. He was appointed in November 2002 and the board officially started operations in March 2003. During his watch, the organization increased from its nine founding members to 195 to date, including 53 regulatory authorities and central banks from 41 jurisdictions. During that time the IFSB has also published 14 standards relating to various products governance issues. Rifaat resigned last year and his tenure came to an end in April 2011, making way for a new secretary general. In the first installment of a two-part in-depth and unique interview, Rifaat discusses with Arab News the circumstances of the establishment of the IFSB; the major role that the IMF (International Monetary Fund), the Basle Committee and the Asian Development Bank played in its early years and continues to play today; and the political battle that had to be resolved to decide where the new organization would be located.

Written by Suapi Shaffaii

May 9, 2011 at 9:28 pm

Islamic Economics, Banking, and Finance – The Indonesia Experience: Dr. Antonio Syafii

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Dear Islamic Bankers,

If you happen to be within the vicinity of the University of California, Berkeley and are interested to know the state of Islamic banking in Indonesia, just head to the university hall and meet an Indonesian scholar for the related insights.  Check out the details below:

Date: May 12, 2011

Time: 12-1 p.m

Venue: International House, Home Room, University of California, Berkeley

Speaker: Dr. Muhammad Syafii Antonio

Background of Speaker:

Dr. Muhammad Syafii Antonio is a renowned Islamic Banking expert from Indonesia, and has over 16 years of experience in the field. He holds Ph.D in Finance from University of Melbourne, obtained Masters of Economic from International Islamic University Malaysia and first degree in Islamic Law from University of Jordan and Islamic Studies Program from Al Azhar University, Cairo. He has published nine books on Islamic banking, economics, zakat and leadership. Currently, he serves as Board of Commissioner and Shariah Advisor in several Islamic financial institutions, as well as member of Indonesian Central Bank’s Expert Committee on Islamic Banking and National Shariah Council.
At International House, UC Berkeley, Dr. Syafii Antonio will present an overview of Islamic Economics, Banking, and Finance and will highlight Indonesia’s experience in establishing such system.

This event is free of charge and open to the public.

ihprograms@berkeley.edu, 510-642-9460

Source: http://events.berkeley.edu/index.php/calendar/sn/polisci.html?event_ID=43446&ovrrdr=1

Written by Suapi Shaffaii

May 8, 2011 at 9:20 pm

Posted in General Issue

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2010 in review

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The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Fresher than ever.

Crunchy numbers

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A helper monkey made this abstract painting, inspired by your stats.

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 12,000 times in 2010. That’s about 29 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 5 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 360 posts.

The busiest day of the year was October 20th with 91 views. The most popular post that day was Islamic banking: Sharia-compliant institutions buck trend.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were en.wordpress.com, counter.bestproceed.com, statistics.bestproceed.com, search.conduit.com, and isegs.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for islamic finance news, reverse murabaha, islamic banking in sri lanka, unicorn international islamic bank malaysia berhad, and commodity murabahah.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

Islamic banking: Sharia-compliant institutions buck trend November 2008
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2

Islamic Banking Law in Kuwait July 2008
2 comments

3

Shariah Governance – The real nexus for comprehensive Islamic financial regulatory and supervisory infrastructure August 2008
2 comments

4

Sri Lanka – A closer look at its Islamic banking framework July 2008
1 comment

5

Royal Bank of Canada plans to enter Islamic finance market July 2008

Written by Suapi Shaffaii

January 2, 2011 at 2:57 pm

Sukuk Roadblocks May Rise With National Shariah Boards: Islamic Finance

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By Khalid Qayum and Dana El Baltaji – Oct 28, 2010 7:38 PM GMT+0800 Thu Oct 28 11:38:07 GMT 2010

Points of Essence:

  • The AAOFI-led National Shariah Board plan to oversee Sukuk sales may face resistance from the Islamic finance practitioners even before its inception saying that would create another layer of bureaucracy as there has been sufficient regulation to monitor Sukuk. This will according to them stifle the growth of Sukuk and hamper its evolution speed
  • AAOFI insisted that the Board will play a pivotal role in synchronizing and standardizing the sukuk regulations with the international standards which in turn may help clarify standards and bolster investors’ confidence in the Sukuk industry.

The plan to create national Shariah boards to oversee sukuk sales is drawing criticism from bankers and lawyers who say the groups would increase bureaucracy in the $1 trillion Islamic finance industry.

The Accounting & Auditing Organization for Islamic Financial Institutions, a leading global regulator, is in the final stages of a plan recommending governments appoint panels of scholars and experts at the national level to rule whether products comply with the religion’s tenets, Mohamad Nedal Alchaar, secretary-general of the Manama, Bahrain-based body, said in an interview in Kuala Lumpur on Oct. 26. The proposal will be submitted early next year, he said.

The regulator says such a system will help clarify standards and bolster investor confidence in an industry whose assets are forecast by the Kuala Lumpur-based Islamic Financial Services Board to almost triple to $2.8 trillion by 2015. The changes risk adding bureaucratic hurdles and slowing approvals at a time when sales are down 19 percent this year, according to CIMB-Principal Islamic Asset Management Sdn. and Atlanta-based law firm King & Spalding LLP.

Further regulation may just add another “layer of bureaucracy,” Jawad A. Ali, global deputy head of the Islamic finance practice at King & Spalding, said in an interview in Kuala Lumpur on Oct. 26. “I believe it would slow down the development of Islamic finance and render it uncompetitive.”

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Written by Suapi Shaffaii

October 29, 2010 at 3:04 pm

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