Organised jointly by the Accounting and Auditing Organization for Islamic Financial Institutions (AAOIFI), the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) and the World Bank Group, the 11th AAOIFI-World Bank Conference has started on Monday. CBB Governor Rasheed Al Maraj said in his keynote address that the CBB would introduce a set of new regulations for the Islamic Financial Industry. He added that the industry also needs to invest in the training of the human capital in addition to working on succession planning. Participants discussed the challenges, opportunities and development of Islamic finance in the changing economic climate. The main take away of the day was about the future prospects, innovation, differentiation between the capitalism and the Islamic finance as a whole.
The UNEP Finance Initiative Global Roundtable 2016 was held at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Dubai. The panel of Islamic bankers and investors highlighted that the heart of sustainability lies in ethical business practices such as those espoused by Islamic financing. The experts mentioned that most Islamic institutions were under increasing pressure to integrate environmental impact and sustainability into their decision-making process. CEO of Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank, Tirad Al Mahmoud, said ethics themselves were the answer to everything. He added that financial regulators often failed to properly apply incentives and disincentives, and suggested ethical investments could be rewarded by discounts on capital. Panellist Nida Raza, Director of Advisory Services at the Islamic Centre for Development of the Private Sector, said she believed Islamic finance bodies must become more inclusive.
#Nigerian experts on Islamic finance met in Sokoto to discuss economic solutions, expressing the opinion that Islamic financing principles are the only alternative to end the current recession. The conference was organized by the Department of Management Science of Usman Danfodiyo University, Sokoto and ran under the theme "Management of Nigerian economy: Issues and Perspective in Islam". Lead presenter Dr. Ahmadu Bello Dogarawa said applying Islamic principles in corporate governance would go a long way in addressing Nigeria’s challenges. In his keynote address, Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal said Islamic finance was no more peripheral to conventional finances as it was being operated in 75 countries, including western nations.
The 2016 HUMA Islamic Finance Conference was held at Harvard University on October 14 and 15 on the role of Islamic finance in sustainable development goals. CEO of Wahed Invest, Mr. Junaid Wahedna spoke about the future of the industry and the impact of Robo-advising on Islamic financing and sustainable development goals. He said that Wahed Invest brings the latest technology into the world of ethical financing and the feedback from attendees was extremely encouraging. The two-day event included sessions to discuss the functions of Islamic finance, while also critically probing the institutional constraints and the product limitations that may challenge the Islamic finance industry in making a meaningful impact.
The 'Innovation 4 Impact' Competition took centre stage at the 2016 Global Islamic Economy Summit (GIES 2016) as one of the Summit’s special programs. The competition is organised by Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority (DSOA), and the Dubai Islamic Economy Development Centre (DIEDC), in strategic partnership with Thomson Reuters. Five distinguished finalists from around the world presented a five-minute pitch towards supporting Islamic digital economy, followed by a seven-minute Q&A from a panel of expert judges. The winner, selected through the votes of the jury and the audience, is announced on October 12. The five finalists are: Alem Health, represented by Aschkan Abdul Malek from Singapore; Divine Connect, represented by Mohamed Pazhoor from USA; iGrow, represented by Muhaimin Iqbal from Indonesia; Intuition Intelligence Inc., represented Arif Ansari from USA and Kwn Education, represented by Hala AlTurki from UAE.
The third plenary session of the first day of the Global Islamic Economy Summit 2016 examined whether blended finance is the answer to funding sustainable development. The session explored the role of wealthy Muslim governments, sovereign wealth funds and Islamic financial institutions in achieving sustainable development goals within a realistic timeframe. Dr. Mohammed Yousef Al Hashel, Governor of the Central Bank of Kuwait, examined whether the sheer scale of sustainable development goals (SDGs) was responsible for a funding gap, as well as the best ways to address such obstacles. Investments in SDGs are not attractive to investors, he said, adding that the very nature of Islamic economy may offer a solution to these challenges. According to Dr Al Hashel, we need to progress from Shariah-compliant products to a Shariah-based system that doesn’t just mimic traditional banking, but rather innovates and creates new products and solutions.
More than 100 participants participated in the World Bank-Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB) High-Level Seminar on Islamic Finance and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on October 6. The Seminar was highlighted by a keynote address by his Royal Highness Muhammadu Sanusi II, the Emir of Kano and former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria. The Emir stressed the potential of Islamic finance to mobilise much needed capital to achieve the SDGs. Ms. Arunma Oteh, the Vice President and Treasurer of the World Bank, similarly stressed the importance of Islamic finance as an agent for financial inclusion and for mobilising private investment in infrastructure. The panel discussion examined how countries are increasingly using Islamic finance to support developmental goals, and innovative sukuk structures supporting both physical and social infrastructure.
The Financial Inclusion and Islamic Finance Forum is scheduled to take place in Kuala Lumpur between the 11th and 16th of November. The event is hosted by the IFSB, a Malaysia-based standard-setting organization that issues guiding principles for banking, capital markets and the insurance sectors. The other host is the International Centre for Education in Islamic Finance, a university also based in Malaysia and centered around the Islamic finance industry. The standard fees to attend are USD 1,200 if registering by November 2, 2016, and USD 1,500 if registering after.
Noor Bank has committed its support to the art and design exhibition at the Global Islamic Economy Summit (GIES 2016). GIES 2016 is scheduled between 11-12 October at the Madinat Jumeirah Hotel in Dubai and is under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. The summit is anticipated to convene more than 2,000 policymakers to discuss key developments of the Islamic economy sector. Speaking on the bank’s participation in GIES 2016, Hussain Al Qemzi, CEO of Noor Bank, said that this event deeply resonated with Noor Bank’s core values. Noor Bank is looking forward to showcasing the exhibition which features signature art works of this year’s emerging artists alongside established names in the field.
The 47th anniversary of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) was celebrated on Saturday in Istanbul. The event was organized by the Research Center for Islamic History, Art and Culture (IRCICA). Halit Eren, general director of IRCICA, said the organization had two main goals, one to restore Islamic cultural heritage in Muslim regions in war and the other to struggle with radicalism. Eren said the OIC works on projects to restore the historical structure in the walled city of Jerusalem and in war-torn Syria. OIC General Secretary Iyad bin Ameen Madani was the main speaker of the organization. In his speech, Madani said the OIC made important steps in social, cultural, economic, technologic and educative domains.
The Islamic Microfinance Summit takes place on September 26-27, 2016 in Dubai and is organized by Uniglobal, a Prague-based provider of workshops and conferences. The theme of this conference is "raising awareness and ensuring compliant and targeted product development to aid poverty alleviation." Its goal is to promote Islamic microfinance, particularly to the international donor community.
Indonesia is all set to host the Indonesia Fintech Festival & Conference 2016 (IFFC 2016). The event is organised by Indonesia Financial Services Authority (OJK) in association with Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KADIN) and will be held in Tangerang from August 29 to 30. IFFC 2016 will focus on several issues related to fintech, including financial inclusion. A series of workshops and conferences for fintech players will be conducted. Also, a startup competition will take place as part of the event. Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands will be special guests. According to the organising committee, up to 2,000 tickets have been sold so far.
The General Council for Islamic Banks and Financial Institutions (CIBAFI) has announced the schedule of its Technical Workshops on Product Development for Islamic Financial Institutions (IFIs). The workshops will start on August 30 and will be organized in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Sudan. The three-day Technical Workshops aim to provide participants with hands on technical knowledge and skills pertaining to product development, with a focus on Islamic financial services. CIBAFI, as the voice of the industry, aims to provide platforms such as these to develop human capital and bring industry professionals together.
The 6th Global Islamic Microfinance Forum (GIMF) will convene in Nairobi, Kenya on November 8-9, 2016. Muhammad Zubair Mughal, the CEO of Al-Huda, said the GIMF will explore how new and effective strategies can alleviate poverty. He said the most alarming situation is that major chunk of poverty exist in Muslim countries, as it is considered the number one agenda of "financial inclusion." In these countries a proper platform is needed, valuing their cultural and social values, which is possible only through Islamic Microfinance. Amjad Saqib, Executive Director of Akhuwat declared that Akhuwat has so far distributed almost Rs. 25 billion among 1,323,586 families. He presented the "Qarz-e-Hassan" model as a true model of Islamic Welfare oriented Microfinance system. The Forum will be followed by two days post event workshop, How to Develop, Operate and Sustain Islamic Microfinance Institutions planned for November 10-11, 2016.
IFC & ISRA Thematic Workshop 2016, in association with K&L Gates
Wednesday, 26 October 2016, 9:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
The Islamic Finance Council UK (IFC) and the International Shari’ah Research Academy for Islamic Finance (ISRA), in association wih K&L Gates invite you to an event addressing the Shari’ah governance model. The event will include the UK launch of the IFC and ISRA External Shari’ah Audit Report 2016.
Location: K&L Gates, One New Change (Watling Street entrance), London
Presenters: Jonathan Lawrence
Sponsors: K&L Gates, IFC, ISRA
9.30am - Registration and breakfast
10.00am - Morning sessions
12.00pm - Networking lunch
1.00pm - Afternoon sessions
3.00pm - Event concludes
The event will cover several key themes including:
How the current Shari’ah governance model works; its gaps and limitations
Examining the role of scholars alongside areas of potential conflict and impairment
The role of external Shari’ah audit
Regulatory differences in approach – is there a ‘best practice’?
in September 2016:
In the growing area of Islamic microfinance, a diverse skillset is required. Professionals have to be knowledgeable in traditional retail banking, in the ethics of Islamic finance and in the relevant compliance and regulation issues. In order to provide you with the necessary skills and know-how to become a well-rounded Islamic microfinance professional, we have designed the certification course ‘Certified Expert in Islamic Microfinance’. This e-learning course was jointly developed by a team of experts from the Frankfurt School of Finance and Management, Islamic Relief Worldwide, and the Islamic Relief Academy. This combination of expertise provides you with the opportunity to have a rich learning experience based on the broad knowledge of diverse, highly qualified professionals.
This 6-month certification course is designed to be a part-time training, offering you the flexibility to follow your own schedule and the ability to combine daily work with your professional development.
The "Certified Expert in Islamic Microfinance" was funded with UK aid from the UK government.
The Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB), The World Bank Group (WBG) and the Republic of Turkey have organised a joint conference focusing on the takaful sector. This conference, themed "Realising the Value Proposition of Takaful Industry for a Stable and Inclusive Financial System" was held in Istanbul on May 30-31, 2016. The Keynote Address was delivered by Ramazan Ulger, President of the Turkish Insurance Association and Ozgur Koc from the Association of Participation Insurance. Mr. Ulger highlighted that there are 60 insurance companies and one reinsurance company operating in Turkey. He suggested for the takaful industry to develop a wider range of products to address the needs of individuals. Ozgur Koc reiterated the country's vision to establish Istanbul as an Islamic financial centre.
Church and Business Leaders Respond to Pope Francis' Call to Make Wealth Work for the Poor
At the invitation of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace and Catholic Relief Services, impact investing experts and Catholic leaders from around the world will convene in Rome to explore how the Catholic Church and other faith-based institutions can harness the power of impact capital to attain and sustain their social mission.
These institutions, at an early stage in their social enterprise journey, will interact with and learn from successful social entrepreneurs, along with thought leaders from the sector. They will develop strategies, form partnerships and lay the foundation for catalyzing private investment to serve the poor and vulnerable. Celebrating the Extraordinary Year of Mercy established by Pope Francis, the conference is titled Making the Year of Mercy a Year of Impact for the Poor.
The conference begins on June 26, 2016 and is sponsored by Omidyar Network and the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame. It ends on June 28.
On Thursday, the Mo Ibrahim foundation announced that its prestigious Mo Ibrahim Prize for Outstanding African Leadership and Governance will have no winner for 2015. This makes it the fifth year this prize has gone unclaimed since its inception in 2006.
In a statement issued by the Chairman of the foundation, Mo Ibrahim, he agreed with this verdict. “When we launched the prize ten years ago, we deliberately set a very high bar.” The Sudanese-British mobile communications entrepreneur and billionaire founded the foundation with a clear objective: to encourage better governance in Africa based on the belief that governance lays at the heart of tangible and shared improvements in the equality of life of African citizens. However, this recent announcement means that a number of revered heads of states such as Emilio Guebuza (Mozambique) and Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania, both widely credited with the sharp reduction of poverty in their respective states, and presiding over periods of notable economic success, have been overlooked for this year’s prize.
The Award has now been unclaimed more times than won
Le 4e Forum international sur la finance islamique s’est tenu les 2 et 3 juin à Dakar sous le thème: La finance islamique au service du Plan Sénégal émergent (PSE). Ministre Abdoul Aziz Tall a dit que les finances islamiques constituent une solution idéale pour accompagner le processus de réalisation des projets structurants du PSE. Le ministre cite entre autres secteurs prioritaires, l’agriculture, les infrastructures, l’accès des petites et moyennes entreprises (PME), les services sociaux de base.
Selon Mohammed Moustapha Bintubé de la Jaiz Bank le Sénégal constitue un terreau fertile pour l’émergence d’une finance islamique forte.