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Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Hong Kong Government responds favourably to Sukuk consultation - 30 October 2012 - Today the Financial Services Branch of the Financial Services and the Treasury Bureau of Hong Kong issued their response to the Sukuk consultation paper which was issued in March 2012.

The formal title of the consultation paper was "Proposed Amendments to the Inland Revenue Ordinance (Cap. 112) and the Stamp Duty Ordinance (Cap. 117) to Facilitate Development of an Islamic Bond (i.e. Sukuk) Market in Hong Kong”. It provided a detailed analysis of the Sukuk market and relevant tax related changes which would be needed to facilitate the use of Hong Kong based assets in a Sukuk issuance.

Davide Barzilai, Banking Partner and Asia Pacific Head of Islamic Finance at Norton Rose said,

"Interestingly, the Bureau received 15 responses from a broad range of stakeholders. Perhaps this is an indication of the level of interest within Hong Kong for Sukuk instruments. We have seen increased use of Hong Kong as a launch pad for Dim Sum issuances from Malaysian companies and this response will tie in well with what is happening in the market."

Barzilai also confirmed that, "We were very happy to see that the Bureau has taken into account comments made by market practitioners in Hong Kong, in particular, the inclusion of Wakalah based structures. I am glad to see that Hong Kong has been able to avoid any of the political issues which has burdened some other non-Muslim countries when trying to introduce legislative changes to enable a level playing field for Islamic finance".

If you are interested in talking with Davide Barzilai, Partner and and Asia Pacific Head of Islamic Finance at Norton Rose, please contact me to arrange.

(Law Feul.Com / 30 Oct 2012)

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