Tapping Islamic funds

The 7th annual World Islamic Funds and Financial Markets Conference (WIFFMC 2011) will feature critical discussions on strengthening the Islamic funds and investments industry and building international growth by tapping into new jurisdictions.

Convened under the official support of the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB), WIFFMC 2011, to be held under the theme ‘achieving international scale and creating a vibrant Islamic financial market and re-invigorating the Islamic investments industry’, will gather more than 400 key players, regulators and thought leaders in the industry on September 26-27 in Bahrain.

David McLean, WIFFMC managing director, said: “Amidst increasing international integration of Islamic finance, cross-border Sharia compliant investment flows are increasingly contributing to more efficient mobilisation and allocation of funds across regions and also strengthening the financial and economic linkages across various jurisdictions.

“These trends have undoubtedly supported and reinforced the recovery and growth of the global Islamic funds and investments market.”

WIFFMC will begin with a keynote address by Abdul Rahman Mohammed Al Baker, executive director – financial institutions supervision at the CBB. That will be followed by keynote addresses by Germain Birgen, chairman – LFF Islamic Finance Task Force, chairman – ALFI Islamic Finance & ME Working Group, managing director – Global Head HSBC Amanah Securities Services – HSBC Securities Services (Luxembourg) and Gary Palmer, chief executive, Irish Funds Industry Association (IFIA).

The session will discuss key regulatory initiatives to strengthen the Islamic investments industry and will also assess the growth opportunities for Islamic funds in dynamic new jurisdictions.

Mr Al Baker believes there are ‘tremendous opportunities’ for the Islamic funds and investments industry as investors are in search of new investment avenues and asset-classes for greater risk diversification and improved returns.

“In order to tap into these opportunities, it is essential that the industry undergoes innovation in terms of introduction of new asset classes, improvements in global Sharia standardisation, and development of new products and structures,” he added.

“With the increasing challenges of managing funds and investments across multiple geographies and jurisdictions, it is vital to facilitate greater sharing of technical expertise and experiences on Islamic financial markets and infrastructure development including the harmonisation of regulatory arrangements. WIFFMC 2011 will be an ideal platform for the industry to tackle these critical challenges.”

source : gulf weekly

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