Ivory Coast: Africa looks to Islamic finance

The introduction of Islamic finance could be boon to development in Africa, say experts. Beyond the religious aspect, Islamic finance has been identified by many experts as a way to avoid the risks associated with speculation. Global ratings agency Standard & Poor’s (S&P) said in a recent report that new regulations and fiscal incentives could accelerate Islamic finance development in Africa, which could help the continent fund its infrastructural needs. Aware of the challenges, the African Institute of Islamic Finance has launched several initiatives aimed at developing the Islamic Finance sector. Besides, Ivory Coast is about to issue its first Sukuk in the amount of 350 billion CFA francs (roughly $700 million) with the support of the IDB.