Europe

Too important to fail—addressing the humanitarian financing gap

UN study paper on the humanitarian financing gap.

Excerpt:
"The world today spends around US$ 25 billion to provide life-saving assistance to 125 million people devastated by wars and natural disasters. While this amount is twelve times greater than fifteen years ago, never before has generosity been so insufficient. Over the last years conflicts and natural disasters have led to fast-growing numbers of people in need and a funding gap for humanitarian action of an estimated US$ 15 billion. This is a lot of money, but not out of reach for a world producing US$ 78 trillion of annual GDP.

QInvest LLC acquires ERGO Portfoy and launches QInvest Portfoy

QInvest L.L.C. has announced the acquisition of ERGO Portfoy, one of the largest and fastest growing asset management companies in Turkey. Following the completion of this acquisition, QInvest Asset Management will have assets under management close to $1 billion. ERGO Portfoy has been rebranded as QInvest Portfoy and is a subsidiary of Qatar’s QInvest. The senior management of QInvest Portfoy will remain with the firm and will be led by Mr. Murat Vanli, the General Manager of ERGO Portfoy, and will continue to operate from Istanbul. The company has been granted its license to operate by The Capital Markets Board of Turkey (CMB) and is licenced to offer portfolio management to both individual and institutional investors.

Scottish ‘Kirk’ ?joins Islamic faith on cash and morals

The Church of Scotland has joined forces with Islamic finance experts to draw up a “practical ethical financial solution” to help the poor while sticking to the principles of both faiths. The agreement, which was announced on Tuesday, marks an unusual attempt to promote cross-religious financial innovation. Backers say it is too early to say what “solution” the initiative could yield, but possibilities include the creation of a new financial institution with cross-faith legal articles. The Scottish initiative is supported by international Muslim clerics and experts including Lamido Sanusi, a former Nigerian central bank governor famed for cleaning up the banking sector and now one of the country’s highest Islamic authorities.

Formation en finance islamique en Suisse : Genève accueille l’IBQ – Islamic Banking Qualification

Organisé régulièrement dans plusieurs pays, l’Islamic Banking Qualification Program IBQ ® se délocalise à Genève pour une session exceptionnelle les 13-14-15 juin 2016. L’IBQ est une certification internationale dédiée aux principes et pratiques bancaires islamiques. Cette formation en langue française vise à permettre aux professionnels de la finance de comprendre et/ou d’intégrer le secteur bancaire islamique. La formation est d’une durée de 25 heures structurées sous le mode de workshop interactif avec des présentations et études de cas précédées par des lectures.

The IFSB and Banco De Espana to Organise Seminar on Islamic Finance: The Real Economy and the Financial Sector

The Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB) is organising a Seminar on Islamic Finance with the theme, "The Real Economy and the Financial Sector" on 24 May 2016 in Madrid, Spain, supported by the Banco de Espana and in collaboration with the IE Business School, Spain. This Seminar is part of the IFSB European Forum series, held in prominent financial centres in Europe. The one-day 'Seminar on Islamic Finance' is designed to encourage broad interaction among the delegates to explore the potential re-alignment of economic policy frameworks in a manner that strengthens the linkages between the real economy and the financial sector.

BCCI case: The Luxembourg Court of Appeal refuses to reopen the liquidation proceedings

On 2 March 2016, the Luxembourg Court of Appeal has denied an appeal filed by Dr. Adil Elias, Faisal Islamic Bank of Egypt and a handful of other creditors of BCCI against a judgment previously rendered by the Luxembourg Commercial Court, which had refused to reopen the liquidation proceedings of Bank of Credit and Commerce International S.A. (“BCCI S.A.”) and BCCI Holdings (Luxembourg) S.A. (“BCCI Holdings”). Back in July 1991, the Luxembourg, English and Cayman Islands regulators undertook a joint action to close down the operations of the BCCI banking group, and in all three jurisdictions, joint liquidators were appointed to deal with one of the largest bankruptcies of a banking institution ever.

Call for Papers: Global Donors Forum, Istanbul May 2016, 24-25

Resetting Priorities - Redefining Roles

Five years ago, the Global Donors Forum was convened in Dubai to take on a challenging task: to define the roadmap for Muslim giving into the next decade. As a growing network of philanthropists, grantmaking foundations and socially responsible corporations, the Forum lead a consultative dialogue among the thought leaders from which, it was hoped, a new social compact could emerge.

Half a decade on, with the world having changed dramatically as events in the Middle East would attest, the Global Donors Forum 2016, has a new set of issues to focus upon. Foremost among these is the need to rigorously analyse the past decade in order to ascertain how best to formulate strategies to counter emerging challenges. The GDF 2016 will, therefore, attempt to set new priorities as it looks to redefine the role of philanthropy, with a focus on the Muslim world in a radically changed global landscape.

Indonesia likely to defeat Turkey to host IDB's HQ

Indonesia is likely to defeat Turkey to host the Islamic Development Bank’s (IDB) headquarters, a spokesman of the bank has said. Indonesia's strategic position and role during the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) summit were two driving factors behind the decision. IDB Indonesia country director Ibrahim Shoukry said the bank had committed to investing US$1.2 billion on projects in Indonesia over five years. Indonesia, he further said, had some advantages over Turkey due to its prospective market in Asia, which is healthier than Turkey's main market, Europe. Indonesia’s market will be broader due to the ASEAN Economic Community.

Ziraat Islamic bank follows parent bank to loans

The Islamic subsidiary of Turkey's Ziraat Bank has launched a bitesize $75m murabaha deal, as the bank itself refinances $1bn of loans. Ziraat Participation (Ziraat Katilim Bankasi), which is wholly owned by Ziraat Bank, launched a $75m dual currency loan earlier this week — its first ever syndicated deal, according to a lead banker. Banks can make commitments in euros and dollars. ABC Islamic Bank is co-ordinator.

IFN CIS & Russia Forum on 15th of March 2016 in Moscow

Islamic Business and Finance Development Fund and REDmoney Group are jointly organizing IFN CIS & Russia Forum on 15th of March 2016 in Moscow. Islamic finance should become one of the strongest driving forces toward effective development of an international market that unites more than 182 million people of the Eurasian Economic Union. Participation in the Forum has already been confirmed by representatives of the largest Russian and international financial institutions.

http://www.ifncisrussiaforum.com

BRIEF-Turkey's TMSF says Bank Asya cannot be returned to original shareholders

TMSF fund says Bank Asya will either be sold or merged within this period, or liquidated if that not possible.

UPDATE 1-Turkey to liquidate Bank Asya if sale not agreed within three months

Turkey's Bank Asya will not be returned to its original shareholders after being seized by the government last year, the deposit insurance fund that now owns the bank said, adding that it would pursue liquidation if a buyer is not found within three months. Within the framework of the existing legal situation, the return of the bank to its (shareholders) is not possible, the Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF) said on Tuesday, adding that it had given the bank a three-month deadline from Feb. 29 to find a buyer or be merged. If this is not possible, its liquidation will come on to the agenda, the TMSF said.

Investment banking arm of Qatar’s Barwa scours Turkey for deals

The First Investor (TFI), the investment banking arm of Qatar’s Barwa Bank, is looking for investments in Turkey, in sectors ranging from real estate to food, its acting chief executive Yousef Al Obaidan said. TFI has not specified a budget for Turkey, although its existing holdings in the Gulf region average around $100-$150 million per investment, Al Obaidan said. Individual investments in Turkey could exceed that, he said. The bank, which is also involved in private equity and asset management, is particularly interested in Turkey’s real estate, healthcare, education and food and beverage industries, Al Obaidan said. TFI is already active in Turkey, where Kiler, a REIT, mandated it in December for the sale of the Istanbul Sapphire shopping center and residence.

Turkey’s Ziraat Islamic unit applies for 1.5 bln lira sukuk

The Islamic lending arm of Turkey’s state-run Ziraat Bank has applied to sell 1.5 billion lira ($501.9 million) worth of Islamic bonds, according to Turkey’s Capital Markets Board (SPK). The sale would be the first by a state-run Islamic bank, and follows a wider government push to develop the sector in the world’s eighth most populous Muslim nation. No tenor or details of underlying assets were given for the deal, which will be sold to qualified investors. Islamic lender Kuveyt Türk also applied for 1.85 billion lira worth of sukuk. Ziraat Participation Bank started operations in May 2015, with 675 million lira in paid-up capital and plans to have 170 branches and 2,200 staff by the end of 2018.

Islamic bank BLME to acquire SME-focused leasing business

Bank of London and The Middle East (BLME) said it would acquire Renaissance Asset Finance as part of efforts to grow its leasing business. Dubai-listed BLME said in a statement the acquisition would be finalised in early April, without disclosing a deal size. The Islamic lender helped launch Renaissance in 2014 when it provided a financing line of 35 million pounds, with both firms seeking to fill a funding gap for mid-sized companies. Renaissance offers financing solutions including sale and leaseback transactions, with a maximum advance of 2 million pounds.

UPDATE 1-Turkish authorities to sell or liquidate Bank Asya -fund chairman

Turkey plans to sell Islamic lender Bank Asya by the end of May and will liquidate it if a buyer is not found, Sakir Ercan Gul, chairman of the Savings Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF) that controls the bank said. Gul said that some of the bank's partners have accepted it, some of them have not. The bank will be sold in any case, he added. Last year the government seized the assets of Bank Asya, saying its financial structure and management presented a threat to the financial system, and took over more than 20 companies with ties to Gulen.

Turkish President calls for Islamic banking to reach 25 per cent

Speaking at the launch of the participation banking unit of state-owned Vakibank, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the share of Islamic banking is around five per cent now, but the target was earlier defined to increase this share to 15 per cent by 2025. He stated his opinion that the share should reach 25 per cent instead. In December 2014 Vakifbank’s Board of Directors had authorized the bank to carry out all necessary transactions to obtain financing from Islamic Development Bank (IDB) to pledge capital for the Bank's participation banking project, amounting to $300 million with Turkish Treasury guarantee.

Bank Asya shareholders dismiss fund’s statement on possible sale

A statement from the deposit insurance fund (DIF) that Islamic lender Bank Asya would either be sold or liquidated by the end of May has no legal basis and its shareholders will never agree to such forced maneuvers, Süleyman Ta?ba?, a lawyer for Bank Asya shareholders said. Selling the bank is not legally possible according to banking law, he explained, adding that the bank's equity capital ratio is still strong; it has TL 1.35 billion in equities and another TL 1.4 billion deposited with the central bank. Plus, the shareholders still hold ownership. Ta?ba? criticized DIF's irresponsible statements, adding that all parties should respect the judicial process that is currently under way with regards to the bank's future.

European bank arranges financing for Central Anatolian hospital

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has announced it is co-financing the development of a 318 million-euro high-tech hospital in Konya, a city in Turkey’s central Anatolian region. As part of a comprehensive long-term financial package, the EBRD has arranged a 147.5-million-euro-of syndicated loan under its A/B loan structure, with 67.5 million euros for the Bank’s own account and 80 million euros of syndicated to UniCredit Bank Austria AG and Siemens Financial Services. The Black Sea Trade and Development Bank and the Islamic Development Bank are providing parallel financing of 50 million euros and 67.5 million euros respectively.

Turkey could become interest-free financial hub, Al Baraka Banking CEO says

Adnan Ahmed Yousif, the head of Al Baraka Banking Group, said Turkey, and especially Istanbul, had the potential to become a hub for financial services. Yousif, who is the president and CEO of the Bahrain-based group, said Turkish economic administrators were aiming to broaden the services offered to customers, with special focus on participation banks. He also said Turkey's huge potential might facilitate the interest of investors from the Gulf countries as well as create new opportunities for the recently expanding sukuk market in Turkey.Turkey and especially Istanbul, is very close to participation banking markets, such as the GCC and Europe.

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