Al Salam invests in Hong Kong plant

Al Salam Bank Bahrain has led investment into a new waste-to-biodiesel plant in Hong Kong. The plant is operated by ASB Biodiesel, a Hong Kong-based company under the chairmanship of HRH. It is capable of processing waste oils into 100,000 tonnes of biodiesel annually. The construction cost of the plant was $165 million. Specifically, ASB Biodiesel collects waste cooking oil and up to 550 tonnes of grease trap waste per day, then processes the waste using multi-feedstock technology from Austrian designer BDI Bioenergy International.

Hong Kong sukuk plan is a load of phooey - opinion

Hong Kong has reiterated its desire to become a hub for Islamic bonds, finally changing its tax laws to be much more sukuk friendly. But with no natural investor or issuer base for the product, and rising competition from better suited Asian countries, Hong Kong will only ever be an also-ran.

China Hui merchants fair to be held in September

The sixth China Hui Merchants Fair will be held in September as part of the China-Arab States Expo in Wuzhong, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region. The Hui people are a predominant Muslim ethnic group in China, who usually speak Chinese and prefer traditional Islamic dress. During the fair, many activities will be held including the annual meeting of Hui merchants, a Halal Industry development forum, a contest between Halal food suppliers and an international Muslim food culture week. The Hui Merchants Fair aims to promote economic and cultural cooperation and exchange between China and Arab States. Ultimately, Wuzhong hopes to be the production base for Halal food in China.

Greater yuan usage urged in China-Middle East transactions

The central banks of China and the UAE are strengthening bilateral financial cooperation in order to further increase trade and investment activities between China and the Middle East. Greater yuan currency usage in bilateral transactions will provide opportunities for public and private asset managers in Middle East to diversify and enhance their portfolio investments.

New law may bolster Hong Kong market for Islamic finance

Last year the Financial Services and the Treasury Bureau presented feedback on the consultation on the amendments which were proposed aiming to ease development of an Islamic bond in Hong Kong. The government of Hong Kong has a long-standing policy initiative to develop Islamic finance in the city. As a part of it, the bureau sent out a consultation paper containing detailed proposals for the amendment of relevant tax-related legislation. The key part of the proposal states that a level playing field needs to be created to enable Islamic finance products to be structured in Hong Kong.

Hong Kong is gate to China - KFH report

According to a report by Kuwait Finance House (KFH), over a period of five years Hong Kong managed to establish Islamic Shariah compliant organizations, authorities, products and services. There is high potential for Islamic banking in Hong Kong due to Hong Kong's high liquidity, free economy, strong presence of foreign banks and simple taxes' system. Thus, it is a great candidate to become a major Islamic financial hub.

Gassner's picture

Islamic finance title from German translated to Chinese

Dear Reader,

The German language book on Islamic finance by the Editor of and Dr Wackerbeck from Booz Consultants is now translated to Chinese.

Please find the biographical information below:

Authors: Michael Gassner / Philipp Wackerbeck
Title: Islamic Finance – Islam-gerechte Finanzanlagen und
ISBN number: 978-7-5139-0217-5
PUBLISHER: Beijing - Democracy and Construction Press
Pre-Publication Date: 2012.7

Full biographical details:


Book review about the German language original:

Best regards,

Michael Gassner

Hong Kong Releases Consultation Conclusions On Sukuk Taxation

The government of Hong Kong released the conclusions of a consultation which ended in May 2012. Thus, a taxation framework for Islamic bonds is provided on a par with that for conventional bonds. The promotion of Islamic finance development in Hong Kong has been taken into consideration. Due to Hong Kong's leading role as an international financial centre and China's global financial centre, Hong Kong is able to match the needs of fund raisers and investment demands of investors among China, the Middle East and other parts of the world interested in Islamic financial products. The legislative amendments released are expected to contribute to anchoring more asset management activities in Hong Kong.

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Zeti outlines growing potential to raise funds in Chinese currency

According to Bank Negara governor Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz, there is more renminbi financing in the pipeline after the two issuances of offshore yuan sukuk out of Malaysia and a yuan bond issuance by Malaysian corporations. She said that the reason for this was that there was greater potential to raise funds in the currency, especially investments in China.

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Bank Muamalat to open 1st Islamic bank in China

Malaysian Bank Muamalat announced the launch of the first Islamic bank in China. The project is planned to be realized in a two-years' time in team with Bank of Shi Zui Shan of China. The new bank will be situated in the autonomous region of Ningxia Hui. Its role will be to contribute to the development and promotion of Islamic banking in the region.

Tebyan launches first Shariah Fund

Tebyan Asset Management (Tebyan) launched its debut Tebyan CHIME Opportunities Fund (Fund). This is the first of its kind Shari'ah-compliant product to present investors a gateway to the emerging economic axis of the Arab-Indo-China regions.
The new Fund will be managed by Tebyan, established and regulated in the Cayman Islands and co-managed by Gulfmena Investments (Gulfmena) as Investment Manager who will supervise the MENA and Africa investments and Lion Global Investors (Lion Global).
The fund will cover what is known as CHIME (China, India, and Middle East).

3-day workshop to empower Muslim NGOs opens at IDB

The Islamic Development Bank’s community development workshop has the purpose to empower Muslim NGOs in different parts of the world by offering them necessary training to boost their leadership skills.
Prominent leaders of Muslim organizations and institutions in 14 countries including Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, c and the Philippines who had come to the Kingdom to perform Haj this year, including professor Siddique Hassan, vice president of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind, will be included in the program.

Islamic assets set to reach $5trn

Shariah assets worlwide are estimated to reach $900 billion to $1 trillion, which is three times the size of China's mutual fund asset base. It is expected that it expands to $4 trillion to $5 trillion by 2015.
The positive fact for asset managers is that this money currently has few places to go.
In some markets with large Muslim populations, the request for investment products based on Islamic law, or Shariah, exceed supply. In India, for example, about 50 per cent of the 160 million Muslims were found to be excluded from the financial sector.

Philanthropreneurs and Companies Doing Good while Doing Well

As companies are applying the "part philanthropy/part corporate strategy" business model, they are developing markets AND contributing to bettering the lives of millions of people. One of the examples is Intel's World Ahead program in China. The tech company has planned to spend $1 billion over five years to improve Internet access in developing countries and train teachers on how to use technology.

India has enormous opportunity for Sharia-compliant investments

India has little or no facilities for them to invest their money in a Sharia-compliant manner. The total size of 100 per cent Islamic funds registered for sale in India was only $3.1 million (Dh11.4 million) in March 2011.
But, actually, India is important for the growth of Islamic finance. The country has historical ties to the Gulf, and is not only part of the Bric group of nations (Brazil, Russia, India and China), but it is also categorised as a rapidly developing economy (RDE).

FSTEP Nurtures Future Talents For Financial Services Sector

Lee Khee Joo, the Financial Sector Talent Enrichment Programme (FSTEP)'s head, underlined the fact that human capital was an essential enabler for the financial services sector as the industry required highly-qualified people to continue innovating and raising standards.
FSTEP trains and prepares highly-calibre graduates for employment in the finance sector throughout the entire year.
Lee stated that the industry will be challenged in overcoming the talent shortage, specifically in the Islamic finance sector. He added that Malaysian financial institutions would also benefit from growing business relationships between Malaysia and China as well as India.

ADIB launches Capital Protected Soft Commodity Note

Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank launched a capital protected Soft Commodity Note that provides an opportunity for investors to invest in this Murabaha based Note, the profit of which is determined by the prices performance of cotton, corn and sugar.
This is a opportunity given to investors to a return based on the expected performance of the three commodities. Their price depends on growth in population and buying power of the emerging economies of China, India, Asia and Africa.

Will Bill Gates and Warren Buffett visit Turkey?

Bill Gates and Warren Buffett began an expedition in order to promote their commitment named ‘Giving Pledge’. This commitment is an engagement made by billionaires to give away at least half of their wealth.
The question is if the next stop for this programme is Turkey.
At this point this programme appears to be not so welcomed, as in China Buffett and Gates got a pretty indifferent response, in public at least, and none of India’s economic winners has yet signed on.

Jim O'Neill tips Arab world to be next big opportunity

Jim O'Neill, chairman of the massive Goldman Sachs Asset Management arm, said he believed that the Arab world could emerge as the fifth Bric, joining the booming economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China.
Emerging markets fund manager Charlemagne Capital is launching a new fund to exploit opportunities in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) as a result of the political tensions across the region.

Retakaful firm Best Re sees growth in Africa, South America

Sharia-compliant reinsurer Best Re will grow its business in Africa and eventually expand into South America to diversify its sources of income which is mainly derived from Asia.
Asia, specifically countries such as China, Indonesia and Malaysia, accounts for three-quarters of Best Re's income and the company wants to bring this share to about 60 percent within five years.

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