Saturday, 4 July 2015

Event Summary (KLCIF2015) - KL Conference on Islamic Finance 2015

KL Conference on Islamic Finance 2015

Date    : 18-19 August 2015
Venue : Grand Seasons Hotel, Kuala Lumpur - Malaysia

“An international gathering of practitioners, scholars and experts to discuss and share their knowledge, expertise and experience on the principles, instruments and issues related to Islamic finance, to be held at the world’s leading Islamic financial centre…Kuala Lumpur.”

Event site :

- Product development and Implementation of Islamic financial products
- Ensuring Shariah compliance in Islamic financial instruments
- Sukuk: development, issues and challenges
- Islamic gold account: a golden opportunity
- Islamic mutual funds (unit trusts): factors to consider in making an investment
- The rise of Islamic wealth management in Islamic finance industry
- Islamic financial planning: success in both worlds
- Takaful: innovation and solutions
- Enterprise risk management for Islamic banks
- Enterprise risk management for takaful operators
- Accounting and auditing
- Human capital development in Islamic finance industry
- Legal issues and challenges in Islamic finance
- Dispute settlement in Islamic finance: issue and solutions
Islamic ethics in financial services industry
- Corporate governance for Islamic finance industry


Speakers are selected from Islamic banks, takaful operators, academicians, legal practitioners, consultants, regulatory bodies.

Among the speakers are:

- Islamic bankers/bankers
- Takaful/insurance operators
- Regulators
- Head of governmental departments
- Financial planners/wealth advisors
- Financial consultants
- Legal practitioners (lawyers)
- Academicians (lecturers)
- Entrepreneurs (businessmen/importers/exporters etc)
- Other professionals 

Early Bird Fee: 
Registration with payment by 10 July 2015
Malaysian   :  RM1,500
International  :  USD600

Normal Fee:
Registration with payment after 10 July 2015
Malaysian  :  RM1,800
International  :  USD700
Special fee for Malaysian university lecturers :  RM1,000 (group discount not applicable)

Fee is inclusive of lunch, refreshments and seminar package only.

Group Discount:
Enjoy 20% discount for third and subsequent delegates registered from the same organisation and the same billing source.

(will be uploaded soon...for now you may request for tentative program or you will be given a tentative program when register online)

 Download the brochure




Grand Seasons Hotel, Kuala Lumpur - Malaysia


Kuala Lumpur


Islamic finance on bank's €475k training bill for taxpayer

The Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan, has confirmed a €1.7m bill to the taxpayer after officials at the Department of Finance, the Central Bank and Revenue took courses and training last year. Out of the 172 pursuing qualifications in courses funded by the Central Bank, only one was seeking a qualification in combating white crime with only one other sitting an anti-money laundering course.
The information was provided in a Dail response to Fianna Fail Finance spokesman Michael McGrath. He said yesterday that he would "support more resources being given to allow Central Bank staff to undertake specialist external courses in areas such as white collar financial crime prevention and detection".
Mr Noonan said the bill for staff at his Department who have completed courses in the current academic year totals €242,347 with an additional €27,782 spent on leadership/management programmes. He confirmed that the Revenue Commissioners' bill for staff taking courses totals €950,000 and this included a bill of €812,300 from the University of Limerick (UL) for 287 Revenue Employees taking a diploma in applied taxation and BA (Hons) in Applied Taxation.
Mr Noonan said his Department "continues to invest in staff development in order to supplement the skills and qualifications of our teams, through a combination of internal and external training, learning and development".

(Business Irish / 04 July 2015)
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Thursday, 2 July 2015

Germany's first interest-free Islamic bank opens in Frankfurt

Germany has opened its first Islamic bank representing a full range of banking services in accordance with the laws of Sharia. The Frankfurt-based bank, called KT Bank AG, is owned by Kuveyt Turk, the largest Islamic banking institution in Turkey.
KT Bank has also opened its affiliates in Mannheim and Berlin and plans to reach Cologne, Hamburg and Munich in the near future.
The Sharia law Islamic banks prohibit bank from charging interest on loans, as well as to take part in investments, especially those considered haram, like gambling, weapons, prostitution and alcohol.
Thus, Islamic banks do not provide customers with a mortgage; instead they buy a house and resell it at a higher price that already includes interest. Given the fact that the bank pays the tax twice – with the purchase and sale of the house – deals become much more expensive compared to those from conventional banks.
Among 4.5 million Muslims residing in Germany, 21 percent are ready to use the services of an Islamic bank, said the head of Kuveyt Turk Bank Kemal Ozan referring to a poll carried out by his company. However, Kuveyt Turk noted that it focuses not only on the Muslims living in Germany, but expects to approach the entire German market.
In 2010, Kuveyt Turk opened a small office in Mannheim, Baden-Wuerttemberg. In 2012 it appealed to the German authorities for a full banking license.
Istanbul-based Kuveyt Turk is one of the largest banks in Turkey and is part of Kuwait Finance House, which is mostly owned by Kuwaiti investors.
Islamic banks have already proved quite successful in the markets of England and France. UK housesfive Islamic banks and the Islamic Bank of Britain reported a 55 percent increase in deposits of non-Muslims over 2014. The bank associates these figures with the Barclays’ rate rigging scandal.
The UK has also become the first non-Muslim country to issue sukuk – an Islamic bond equivalent similar to a participation certificate. This type of bond is also utilized in Hong Kong, Luxembourg and South Africa.
(RT / 01 July 2015)
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Growing Demand for Islamic Finance Talent

The solid growth of the Islamic financial industry in the past few years has been underpinned by several factors, including improvements in regulatory clarity,
supportive demographic factors and product innovation. Indeed, from a USD0.8bln industry in 20091, assets in Islamic finance grew to nearly USD2tln in 20142 . Of these, 79% of assets are in the Islamic banking sector, while sukuk accounted for a 16% share.

Geographically, the Gulf Cooperation Council  (GCC) countries, the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region and Asian countries accounted for a bulk of the industry’s assets. These regions have benefitted in part from favourable demographics and preferences for Shariah-compliant financial services.
Notably, non-OIC countries such as the US, Hong Kong and Luxembourg have also shown increased interest in Islamic finance, as these countries has issued debut sukuk in 2014. In addition to industry developments, growth in the past few years have been accompanied by evolving regulations, especially in key
Islamic finance jurisdictions. For example, Malaysia has enacted its Islamic Financial Services Act (IFSA) 2013. IFSA significantly strengthens the legal foundations that support a comprehensive regulatory and supervisory framework for Islamic finance and reflect international standards for effective supervisory systems. Elsewhere, several jurisdictions such as the UAE and Indonesia5 are in the midst of centralising Shariah functions in the industry.

Overall, recent developments in Islamic finance suggest that the industry is headed for deeper and more robust growth. Nevertheless, at the operations level, a key challenge for the Islamic financial institutions (IFIs) is to ensure adequate human capital supply to support various functions such as Shariah expertise and product development, as well as risk management, legal and information technology.
(Islamic Finance.Com / 01 July 2015)
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Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Qatar Islamic Bank raises 2 billion riyals with Tier 1 sukuk

Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB), the Gulf state's largest sharia-compliant lender by assets, has raised 2 billion riyals ($550 million) with a Tier 1 perpetual sukuk issue, it said on Wednesday. 

The sale was completed on Tuesday and was in accordance with Basel III banking rules, it said in a statement to the bourse. The issue will enhance the bank's capital adequacy ratios and support its business growth, it said.

QIB joins a string of Gulf banks which have tapped the debtmarkets in recent months to replenish their reserves after a period of strong lending growth.

In February, shareholders of QIB approved the issue of up to 5 billion riyals of Tier 1 sukuk.

Last month, Saudi Arabia's National Commercial Bank raised 1 billion riyals ($267 million) through a sukuk issue that enhanced its core capital.

(Al-Arabiya News / 01 July 2015)
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Malaysia: Islamic banking on track to meet 40pc of total financing target

Malaysia’s Islamic banking sector is on track to meet its target of 40 per cent of total financing by 2020, driven by the industry’s ability to continuously tap opportunities to finance the activities of the real economy.
Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) Deputy Governor, Datuk Muhammad Ibrahim, said the continued progress of Islamic finance in the country would very much depend on the industry’s resourcefulness to build and maintain an innovative, competitive and inclusive Islamic finance industry.
“Furthermore, our continuous efforts to initiate cross-border regulators and industry, as well as between regulators and international bodies, would further expand cross-border activities given a steady and strong regulatory and supervisory framework already put in place,” he said.
Muhammad said this in his speech at the launch of Malaysia Islamic Finance Report 2015 today.
The report was launched in strategic partnership between CIMB Islamic, Thomson Reuters, the General Council for Islamic Banks and Financial Institutions and the Islamic Research and Training Institute.
Muhammad said from 2006 to end-2014, foreign issuers had issued sukuk amounting to an estimated RM28 billion in various currencies in the Malaysian marketplace.
“These indications showed that businesses are seeing the economic and business merit of Shariah-compliant products and services and that its appeal extend beyond the traditional captive market,” he added.
However, he noted that growth of the magnitude that Islamic finance experienced over the last decade would increasingly become more difficult if the industry did not continue to be nimble and agile in its approach.
Therefore, he said the key priority was for Islamic finance players to keep expanding and gain market share.
“Greater engagement and collaboration between the industry and academia would also ensure mutually-reinforcing efforts in driving innovation through the development and implementation of new research findings and breakthroughs,” he said.
(Malay Mail Online / 01 July 2015)
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Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Malaysia set to double sukuk sales

Islamic bond sales in Malaysia are set for the best quarter in more than a year as infrastructure firms take advantage of the lowest borrowing costs in 16 months.
State-owned DanaInfra Nasional Bhd. led companies in raising RM17.9 billion since March 31, compared with RM8 billion in the first three months, data compiled by Bloomberg show. The yield on Malaysia’s top-rated 10-year debt sank to 4.59% on June 5, the lowest since February 2014, and was at 4.61% as of June 19.
Sales this year in the world’s biggest sukuk market will probably climb to the highest level since 2012 as Malaysian companies tap a record RM625 billion of Islamic banking assets to fund Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s plans for more railways and roads, according to CIMB Group Holdings Bhd.
The top sukuk arranger in 2014 says companies will bring forward issuance to lock-in low rates before the Federal Reserve raises interest rates.
“The window to sell is between now and the end of the year,” said Badlisyah Abdul Ghani, the Kuala Lumpur-based chief executive officer at the Islamic banking unit of CIMB Group.
“We have a healthy pipeline of companies looking to tap the market this year.”
DanaInfra, formed to finance the country’s MRT project, asked bankers to submit proposals for a RM40 billion Islamic debt programme this month. SapuraKencana Petroleum Bhd plans to sell RM7 billion of such notes.
Najib, who is pushing for higher spending to help Malaysia achieve its goal of attaining developed-nation status by 2020, said in his October budget work will start in 2015 on projects valued at RM75 billion.
This year’s sukuk issuance could surpass RM70 billion, the highest since a record RM109.5 billion in 2012, according to CIMB and and AmInvestment Bank Bhd, Malaysia’s fourth-biggest arranger of Islamic notes.
RHB Capital Bhd., the top arranger this year, expects sales to be similar to last year’s total of RM65.1 billion as a slowing economy prompts companies to review their spending plans.
(The Malaysian Insider / 30 June 2015)
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