Thursday, November 27, 2008

KLIFF: ‘Standardisation will help industry’

Sheikh Nizam Yaquby, a Shariah scholar in high demand by Islamic FIs at the moment, was down in Kuala Lumpur at the recent Kuala Lumpur Islamic Finance Forum (KLIFF) 2008.
As can be seen in the photograph in the Islamic finance section of THE MALAYSIAN RESERVE, Sheikh Nizam (third from left) took part in the one of the discussion sessions.
Other panelists were (from left) Labuan Offshore Financial Service Authority (Lofsa) DG Datuk Azizan Abd Rahman, Fajr Capital MD Rafe Haneef, Global Securities House UK MD Richard Thomas, Securities Commission executive director Datuk Kris Azman Abdullah and Maybank Islamic Bank Bhd Acting CEO Ibrahim Hassan.
In a Reuters report post-conference, it said efforts to standardise the reading of the Shariah will not stifle the Islamic finance sector, a leading Shariah scholar said last Tuesday, dismissing concerns that the industry risks being smothered by too much regulation.
A lack of standardisation in Islamic finance contracts is one of the bigge st complaints among bankers in the US$1 trillion (RM3.62 trillion) industry, but there are also worries that a growing effort to harmonise the sector across the globe could create a one-size-fits all approach in structuring deals, the report said.
"In Islamic law we encourage debate, research, scholarship and it is an ongoing process which cannot be stopped by anybody," Sheikh Nizam Yaquby, a highly regarded scholar told reporters on the sidelines of the Kuala Lumpur Islamic Finance Forum (KLIFF) 2008, held in Kuala Lumpur last week. "However, for the purpose of standardisation, it is important to have certain prudential rules and basic contracts especially repetitive ones to be accepted among a group."

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