10 Jan 2018 - 0:00
Qatar spurs global Islamic banking growth
By Satish Kanady / The Peninsula
DOHA: Qatar’s Islamic banks are the third largest contributor to the global growth in Islamic banking industry. In order to promote this growth, the Islamic banking industry must work together towards activating international partnerships and exchanging knowledge and expertise, H E Ali Shareef Al Emadi, Minister of Finance stated yesterday.
The Minister, while delivering the key note address at the 4th Doha Islamic Finance Conference, in the presence of the Prime Minister and Interior Minister H E Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani, noted Islamic banking accounts for approximately 25 percent of the total banking sector in Qatar.
“Qatar has demonstrated its ability to continue in its journey to help the Islamic finance sector grow and develop by working with the international community. In order to sustain this global growth in Islamic finance, we must work together to address financial risks and increase the efficiency of the Islamic financial services. This will serve to ensure the growth and expansion of Sharia-compliant financial deals and contribute to building a diversified knowledge-based economy,” Al Emadi said.
The minister called for concerted efforts to confront financial risks and increase the efficacy of Islamic financial services in order to ensure growth and expansion of Shariah-compliant financial industry as part of building a diversified knowledge-based economy.
Many countries around the world have turned to Islamic finance to diversify their financial services, strengthen working relationships with their important partners to increase capital inflows, and reduce risk through expansion of less volatile banking systems, he said.
Yousuf Mohamed Al Jaida, Chief Executive Officer, QFC Authority commented: “The QFC is proud to take part in and sponsor this conference as another step in reaffirming our support to the local Islamic finance sector, which we consider as an integral part of our diversification efforts.
This year’s edition will bring together industry experts to discuss, identify and address the challenges facing the Islamic finance sector and the steps and solutions planned to address them.”
Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Jassim AlThani, Chairman of Barwa Group and Managing Director, added: “We at Barwa Bank Group are pleased to take part in the 4th Doha Islamic Finance Conference, we wish it every success in achieving its objectives starting with the introduction of an integrated project to build the Islamic financial industry, positively influence economic development, develop Islamic finance tools to benefit from the digital world, and finding creative and practical solutions to contemporary challenges faced within the industry. This comes in line with Qatar’s economic vision, and would contribute to the legal approach and the formulation and structuring of Islamic finance contracts and the development of the Islamic arbitration environment as a whole.”
Dr Haitham Al Salama, Special Advisor to the Minister of Finance and Chief Economic Advisor, QFC Authority, also commented, stating: “I would like to extend my sincere thanks to Bait Al-MashuraFinance Consultations for their efforts in organising this conference, which now in its fourth edition has become one of the most important Islamic banking conferences in the region. I hope our discussions today will be fruitful, serve the event’s objectives and help us in coming up with creative solutions to the challenges faced by the Islamic finance industry today.”
The conference was attended by over 600 Islamic scholars, researchers, banking officials, academics and experts in the field of Islamic finance from over 20 countries around the world. The conference covered four sessions “Islamic Finance and the Digital World”, “Islamic Finance between Shari’ah Rulings and Legal Systems”, “Contemporary Waqf and its Role in Economic Development” and “Knowledge Capacity Building for Future Generations of Islamic Finance.”
The event also saw the launch of the Qatar Islamic Finance Report 2017 titled “Expanding Prospects.”