Friday, December 12, 2008

UK sukuk document; Islamic finance in Japan

The UK's consultation document provides four options for regulating sukuk (full pdf)range from doing nothing to creating an exemption from certain regulatory requirement for sukuk to put them in a similar regulatory environment as corporate bonds. The transparent discussion of how sukuk are viewed from a regulatory perspective put the UK far ahead of other Western financial centers in promoting Islamic finance. The co-head of the London finance and capital markets team at Clifford Chance, Tim Plews says, "There’s confusion in Dubai as to requirements in other jurisdictions like Hong Kong, so with the U.K. setting the standard, it is providing real leadership".

Japan continues to slowly see an Islamic finance industry develop. Its growth is hampered by tax and regulatory hurdles yet to be overcome as well as a nearly nonexistent domestic demand for Islamic financial products.

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