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Thursday, 20 June 2013

Malaysia: Spotlight on Islamic finance in Budget consultation meeting

KUALA LUMPUR: The 2014 Budget consultation meeting on Tuesday saw Islamic finance featuring prominently in the discussions.

Finance Ministry Secretary General Tan Sri Dr Mohd Irwan Siregar Abdullah said robust growth in the global sukuk market, led by Malaysia in recent years, had made it an important sector for the government.

“We talked about agro sukuk to help companies involved in farming activities raise capital to finance their businesses, alongside other forms of sukuk.

“We are also looking at other ways to introduce new products in the sukuk market in the coming years.

“This is to enable Malaysia to continue being the industry leader,” he told Bernama on the sidelines of the 4th World Takaful Conference : Family Takaful Summit Malaysia, yesterday.

Mohd Irwan said Malaysia’s Islamic capital market had contributed significantly to the development of the global Islamic capital market.

At the same time, he added, non-Muslim countries like Japan and Korea have been attracted to learn from Malaysia on how to introduce Islamic financing to raise their own capital.

The sukuk segment increased its market share of the overall bond market from 14.5 per cent in 2000 to 47.1 per cent as at the end of 2012.

Malaysia continued to be the world largest sukuk market with 69 per cent of the US$280 billion total global sukuk outstanding as at December 2012.

Earlier, in his speech, Mohd Irwan said demand for Islamic products was increasing tremendously on the back of the global financial turmoil, especially in European countries.

He also said that due to the better offers by Islamic financial products compared to the conventional in the global economy, this sector will be among the main points of discussion at the 4th Global Entrepreneurship Summit 2013 to be held in Kuala Lumpur, in October.

The US President Barack Obama, is expected to make a presentation at the event, on his maiden visit to Malaysia.

(Borneo Post Online / 20 June 2013)

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