The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has released its guidelines for the Islamic finance sector. The guidelines noted the need to develop a policy framework in the countries where Islamic banking has become systemically important. While accounting for a small share of global financial assets, Islamic banking has established a presence in more than 60 countries and has become systemically important in 14 jurisdictions.
Although Pakistan finished the IMF loan programme last year, there are still numerous reforms that need to be undertaken. In recent years, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has made efforts for the promotion of Islamic banking, but no real effort has been made by the private sector and the government. The growth of Islamic banking poses new challenges and risks for regulatory and supervisory authorities. The IMF has proposed support for developing and providing policy advice on Islamic banking-related issues in the context of fund surveillance, programme design, and capacity development activities.
On the eve of an international anti-corruption summit the International Monetary Fund has warned of the rising costs of corruption on the world economy. The cost is estimated around $1.5 to $2 trillion, roughly 2% of global GDP. IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said the indirect costs may be even more substantial and debilitating, leading to low growth and greater income inequality.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has calculated that, if oil prices remain low, the fiscal deficits of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and Algeria will total almost $900 bn between 2016 and 2021. The non-oil sector in the GCC is projected to grow at an average rate of 3.25% per year over the next five years, compared to an average of 7.75% between 2006 and 2015. Thus, regional governments are being forced to review their expenditure plans. A recent PwC survey found that 75% of the more than 130 owners have already been impacted by funding constraints, while 65% forecast they will have less to spend next year.
The International Monetary Fund claims, the political instability as well as the stability of state institutions in Egypt could delay the financial injection in value of $4.8bn loan from the fund.
According to the International Monetary Fund, complete segregation of Islamic and conventional banking in Qatar “should reduce the risk of contagion” from one segment to the other in case banking troubles arise in either one.
In February last year, Qatar Central Bank had managed local conventional banks that have Islamic windows, to stop opening new Islamic branches, accepting Islamic deposits, and extending new Islamic financing from 2012. In QCB’s concept, the overlapping nature of non-Islamic and Islamic activities makes banks’ risk management and compliance with prudential requirements more complex.
Yemen is the latest country that announces the possible raise of the much-needed financing from the financial markets through a debut sovereign sukuk issuance sometime in the first half of 2011.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank are assisting Yemen on the technical aspects of issuing commercial paper under a technical agreement which the World Bank Group has with the Jeddah-based Islamic Development Bank (IDB) Group to assist its member countries to help formulate policies to raise financing for infrastructure, development and budgetary support.