Islamic #microfinance fund may be created in #Azerbaijan

The Islamic fund on microfinance may be soon created in Azerbaijan. Recently, a mission of the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), which included the ICD Senior Regional Manager of for CIS and Europe countries Samir Taghiyev and the Microfinance Advisor at the ICD Bassem Khanfar, visited Baku. Azerbaijan has become one of the two countries, where the ICD starts negotiations with participants of the microfinance market. The second country is Kazakhstan. Earlier, during the 8th Micro-finance Conference in Baku, Executive Director of Azerbaijan Micro-finance Association (AMFA) Zhale Hajiyeva said that businessmen of post-Soviet countries also showed interest in the market. Currently, loan portfolio of Azerbaijan’s microfinance organizations amounted to $485.16 million, according to AMFA.

ICD ready to expand agricultural project financing in #Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan and Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD) will discuss the opportunities of financing the country's agriculture. The topic will be discussed by ICD's general driector Khaled Al-Aboodiin during his visit in Baku on May 31. The agricultural projects will be financed through the new Food and Agribusiness Fund with an authorized capital of $600 million. The fund will mainly focus on the production optimization of the companies working in agriculture and a decrease in their logistics inefficiency.

Islamic Development Bank to take part in financing of TAPI

The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) will take part in financing of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) pipeline project. The estimated cost of the project will exceed $10 bn. The annual capacity of the gas pipeline will reach 33 bn cubic meters. It is planned that the total length of the TAPI pipeline will be 1,814 km. Some 214 km will pass through the territory of Turkmenistan, 774 km through Afghanistan, 826 km through Pakistan. The project is expected to be completed in late 2019.

Azerbaijan’s largest bank abolishes Islamic financing

The International Bank of Azerbaijan (IBA) has decided to liquidate the Islamic financing department, head of the liquidated department Behnam Gurbanzade said. The bank's portfolio in Islamic financing amounts to nearly $526 million. By the end of the year, the department was planning to introduce new products and services. It was also planned to allocate long-term loans designed for each industry and to pay particular attention to agriculture. In addition, it was planned to introduce certain forms of financing for the construction, light and food industries. However, the decision on liquidation of the department was made last week.

Iran’s Bank following new funding method

The Iranian Bank Maskan (bank for housing) has undertaken a new method of financing projects to help urban development and land added value growth. Addressing the Iran Transportation and Urban Development Summit, Bank Maskan CEO Mohammad Hashem Botshekan said the bank is working on an asset management method different from the structured financing in which each project has its specific funding prescription.

Iran, Azerbaijan to establish joint bank - minister (EXCLUSIVE)

Iran and Azerbaijan discuss creation of a joint bank and the opening of branches of the two countries' banks in Baku and Tehran. There is a branch of Bank Melli Iran in Azerbaijan, but it is not active, Iran's Minister of Communications and Information Technology Mahmoud Vaezi said, adding that preliminary talks on these issues were already held. Branches of the new bank will operate in both Azerbaijan and Iran.

Iran asks to return money from bankrupt bank in Azerbaijan (exclusive)

Iran has asked the government and the Central Bank of Azerbaijan (CBA) to return the assets of Iranian entities remaining on the accounts of bankrupt Azerbaijani Royal Bank. Officials have appealed to the Azerbaijani government and CBA on the issue of solving the problem with the money of the Export Development Bank of Iran and other entities of the country, which remained on the accounts of Azerbaijani Royal Bank, which has declared its bankruptcy.

Two more Iranian banks willing to enter banking market of Azerbaijan (exclusive)

Two Iranian private banks – “Parsian” and “Pasargad” are interested in opening branches in Azerbaijan, the head of the secretariat of the Azerbaijani-Iranian intergovernmental commission on cooperation in trade, economic and humanitarian spheres Mehdi Mohtasham said.

PM urges Turkish investors to invest in Iraq’s economy

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu urged the country's investors to invest in the economy of Iraq. Davutoglu made this statement at a session of the ruling Justice and Development Party. He said that Turkey must have firms and companies that operate in Iraq. Turkish investments in the territory of Kurdish autonomy of Iraq are estimated at $ 700 million. At present, around 1,500 Turkish companies, as well as the branches of such banks as Ziraat Bankasi, Vakifbank, Is Bankasi, Bank Asya and Albaraka operate in the territory of Kurdish autonomy of Iraq.

Islamic banking in Azerbaijan to be governed by new Banking Code

A package of amendments and additions to legislation in order to regulate the activities of Islamic banking in Azerbaijan will be introduced to the Central Bank of Azerbaijan in the first half of 2015.

Azerbaijan's largest bank starts Islamic financing in Russia

International Bank of Azerbaijan OJSC will provide services on Islamic financing in Russia, the director of the Department of Islamic Banking of the International Bank of Azerbaijan (IBA) Behnam Gurbanzade said.

Iranian banks give 83% more loans in current year

Iranian banks gave 1,463 trillion rials (some $45.7 billion based on the exchange rate of US dollar at the free market) worth of loans in the first half of the current Iranian calendar year. However, a great portion of the bank's loans are bad loans. Iran's Melli Bank, Parsian Bank and Tejarat Bank have the highest amount of bad loans in Iran. Of the total 870 trillion rials (about $28 billion) in bad loans, Melli Bank's share is 130 trillion rials (about $4.2 billion), Parsian and Tejarat banks' shares is 110 trillion rials each (about $3.5 billion).

Azerbaijani leasing company draws additional funds for Islamic leasing

Azerbaijani company Joint Leasing will conclude the first corporate Islamic leasing agreement next week. The company is considering the opportunity of attracting additional resources as part of the Islamic leasing project. At present, there is an opportunity to attract additional funds. In principle, leasing is a tool of Islamic finance. Ijara is among the tools used in Islamic finance.

14 Iranian banks involved in $3-billion embezzlement case

14 Iranian banks are involved in the famous 2011 $3-billion embezzlement case. Iran's prosecutor general Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejei said that state-run Bank Saderat and Bank Melli were the main banks involved in the case. The prosecutor general went on to say that seven MPs who were accused of involvement in the case acquitted due to lack of evidences. Thirty-nine persons were accused of involvement in the case, and several high-ranking officials including certain persons in judiciary, parliament and presidential administration were persecuted or arrested. In addition to death and life sentences, some defendants banned from government jobs.

Islamic Development Bank to allocate 144 million euros for wastewater projects in Iran

The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) will allocate a 144 million euro loan for wastewater projects in the Iranian southern Fars province. For that purpose, the IDB and the Fars province's Water and Wastewater Company have signed a memorandum of understanding on the issue. The company will implement wastewater projects in the Darab, Fasa, Sepidan, Abadeh, Neiriz and Firouzabad cities of the province using the IDB`s loan. The IDB has already allocated some 800 million euros of loans in total for Iran's water and wastewater projects, in Mashhad city, Qom and Kashan, and Tehran among others. The IDB has paid more than 3 billion euros to Iran for implementing its projects so far, of which 70 percent were spent on dam building and water and wastewater projects of the energy ministry.

Iran to assemble group for arresting ex-head of Bank Melli Iran

A special group of police officers will be assembled and sent to Canada for searching and arresting the former head of Bank Melli Iran, Mahmoud Reza Khavari. Since Canadian officials haven't found Khavari yet, Iranian police are asking for one week in order to search for him in Canada. The fraud case originally started in 2007 and involved the use of fraudulent documents to obtain credit for an investment company. Khavari, as the head of Bank Melli Iran, was reportedly involved in the fraud case. However, Khavari escaped to Canada. Iran requested Interpol to announce an international search for him. In June of 2012, Fars news agency reported that Interpol placed Khavari on its Red Notice Wanted list.

EU lifts sanctions against Iran Insurance Company

The European Union has lifted sanctions against Iran Insurance Company following defense presented by the corporation, its Managing Director Javad Sahamian said. The sanctions caused that letters of credit guaranteed by the company were refused by others, but after ease of sanctions the company can work actively in insuring LCs in areas such as freight. Sahamian said the corporation has managed to control sanctions considerably to prevent any great loss and pave the way for more growth.

Chief of the Iran’s Melli Bank removed from his post

Managing director of the Iran's Melli Bank, Farshad Heydari has been removed from his position by the Bank's Association. The embezzlement case originally started back in 2007 by Amir Mansour Arya Investment Company and progressed in 2010, after some Iranian major banks, including Bank Saderat and Bank Melli, issued loans for the company.

New Islamic banks ready to open soon

Turkey has begun to give new banking licenses after the 2001 banking crisis, with no exception for interest-free Islamic banks, called participation banks. The format of two participation banks which will be established by the state-run Banks Ziraat Bank and Halkbank, will be clearer in a few months. As of now four banks have operated in the participation banking industry: Bank Asya, Turkiye Finans, Albaraka Turk and Kuveyt Turk. They constitute 5.3 percent of the Turkish banking industry. The aim of the Participation Banks Association of Turkey is to triple the share of Islamic banking assets in Turkey by 2023. Besides, Ziraat Bank has been planning to set up a separate Islamic bank. Moreover, Turkish lender Halkbank appears to be the second bank to start offering sharia-compliant services under a new entity.

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