In Kyrgyz Republic, Smaller Businesses Seek Islamic Finance: IFC Study

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has released a study that finds overwhelming demand for Islamic finance among smaller business in the Kyrgyz Republic. The report revealed that 80 percent of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) are interested in Shariah-compliant financing, a market that could be worth up to $456 million for lenders. Despite that potential, the study "Islamic Banking and Finance: Opportunities across MSMEs in the Kyrgyz Republic" found that Islamic finance was not widely available because of a lack of awareness and the high cost of structuring transactions. Yet Kyrgyz officials are working to overcome these challenges.

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