Monday, November 06, 2006

WIIFC, WIEF, Profit rate swaps, $1bn sukuk, QIIB to expand in Asia

World Islamic Infrastructure Finance Conference (WIIFC)

"Investments in sukuk show spectacular rise in H1 2006", Gulf Times, November 6, 2006

Saleh Mohamed al-Jaidah, the head of the Qatar Islamic Bank announced that 81 percent of the new bond issues in the Gulf region were sukuk. He was speaking at the World Islamic Infrastructure Conference in Doha, Qatar yesterday.

"Islamic capital market 'inevitable' in time", Gulf Times, November 6, 2006

The head of the Qatari Central Bank, Sheikh Abdullah bin Saud al-Thani, described the 'inevitability' of an Islamic capital market as the demand for sukuk and other Shari'ah-compliant products grows. He said:
“We recognise the difficulty for Islamic banks to participate in long-term financing due to the nature of their liquidity constraints and asset management.

“However, we encourage them to continue developing Shariah-compliant products in order they may expand their financing to public and private infrastructure and industrial projects.

While many Islamic products are currently illiquid, there is potential for a much larger secondary market in Shari'ah-compliant investment products.

"200 international participants attend 1st Annual World Infrastructure Finance Conference (WIIFC)", AMEinfo, November 6, 2006

A brief overview of the WIIFC.

Bank Islam Malaysia Bhd

"BIMB sets up corporate investment banking division", The Edge Daily, November 6, 2006

Bank Islam Malaysia Bhd (BIMB) is expanding its operations into Islamic investment banking and has appointed a director, Mashitah Othman, who has worked on the development of the Islamic capital market and Islamic securities.

Saudi Aramco & ConocoPhillips

"Saudi Aramco, Conoco plan $1 bln sukuk -Riyad Bank", Reuters, November 5, 2006

According to the Riyad Bank, Saudi Aramco and ConocoPhillips are planning to offer a US$1 billion sukuk to finance part of the $6 billion cost of a 400,000 bpd refinery in Jubail on the Gulf Coast. The launch date has not been set and the companies have not yet decided on the asset on which to base the sukuk.

Qatar Islamic Bank

"Qatar Islamic Bank plans expansion in Asia", Yahoo! News Singapore, November 6, 2006

Qatar Islamic Bank, the fifth-largest Islamic Bank in the Gulf area has expanded its plans to open branches in Asia. The bank had already begun to set up the Asian Finance Bank in Malaysia, but will now also open offices in Indonesia, Singapore and Brunei.

Islamic derivatives

"Standard Chartered executes Profit Rate Swap deal with Aref Investment", AMEinfo, November 4, 2006

Standard Chartered, a trade finance company, has executed a deal with Aref Investment on a Shari'ah-compliant derivative product. Details on how the product was structured or how it is meets the standards of Shari'ah-compliance were not included. The profit rate swap "allows both parties to exchange a series of payments in the same currency".

World Islamic Economic Forum Conferences 2006

"Pakistan proposes creation of Islamic Economic Union", Business Recorder (Pakistan), November 6, 2006

Pakistani Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz in his keynote address proposed an Islamic Economic Union with free mobility for capital, labor and goods and services. The proposed Islamic Economic Union would cover the member states of the Organization of the Islamic conferences (OIC)

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