Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Wednesday update

  • A business management student at Singapore Management University shares some thoughts about a 15 week course on Islamic finance in the Straits Times.
  • The AAOIFI Shari'ah conference held in Bahrain this past Monday and Tuesday discussed a number of topics including tawarruq and reverse tawarruq, two products that were recently condemned as a 'deception' by the OIC Fiqh Academy.
  • Calyx Financial spins out an Islamic investment firm called Codexa Capital that, although based in the US, focuses primarily outside of the US.
  • Islamic Finance News will begin an 'ask a scholar' column featuring the Shari'ah scholars on the ISRA Council of Scholars including Dr Mohd Daud Bakar, Dr Mohamed Ali Elgari,
    Dr Abdul Shukor, Dr Abdul Sattar Abdul Kareem Abu Ghuddah and Dr Yusuf Talal Delorenzo.
  • The most recent Central Bank of Bahrain short-term ijara sukuk (which have a maturity of 182 days) was oversubscribed by 200% with a return of 1.30%, compared with the interest rate on identical maturity conventional debt issued today of 1.09%.
  • Dubai Islamic Bank is buying back $50.6 million of its own sukuk maturing in 2012 at 88 cents on the dollar.
  • The sovereign wealth fund of Malaysian region Kuala Terengganu, Terengganu Investment Authority, will sell 30 year oil revenue backed sukuk to raise up to $3.1 billion.
  • Humayon Dar, cEO of BMB Islamic, does not believe the UK will issue a sukuk within the next 12 months. While in Malaysia he said "I wouldn’t think that in the near future, and the near future means in the next 12 months or so, there will be any Islamic sovereign bond issued by the government of Britain."
  • Malaysia is putting aside $1.72 billion to promote Islamic venture capital. Deputy Minister of Finance Dr. Awang Adek Hussin said "By providing funds to budding entrepreneurs with sound ideas, Islamic venture capital can help to promote innovation, job creation and the development of high growth industries".
  • There is an interview with Malik S. Sarwar, CEO of New York-based Sarwar Wealth Advisors which is interesting except for the title which focuses on Islamic finance as a 'panacea'.
  • Kenyan Islamic bank First Community Bank is planning expansion beginning with entry into neighboring Uganda and Tanzania within the next year and a half.

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