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Sunday, 9 September 2012

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Islamic banking to expand

The Islamic capital market in Sri Lanka stands to gain from the country's GDP growth, which exceeded eight percent in 2011, and its position as an emerging economy in Asia is also on the rise.

This has attracted considerable attention from foreign investors which include GCC and South East Asian investors looking to tap into the country's Islamic banking and finance market, said Managing Director and CEO, Amana Bank, Faizal Salieh at the Islamic Finance News roadshow at the Hilton recently.

He said that the Government was an important catalyst in the creation of Islamic banking and finance market with the amendment of the Banking Act No. 30 in 2005 for the licensing of Islamic banks and financial institutions enabling them to offer selected Islamic financial instruments.

Since its establishment in the late '90s, Islamic banking in Sri Lanka has garnered sufficient interest from Muslims and non-Muslims.

The current non-Muslim consumer market in Sri Lanka constitutes more than 20 percent of the total Islamic banking market share, and these figures are expected to grow as education and awareness of Islamic banking products increase in the country, he said. Islamic funds, Takaful and microfinancing are also fast becoming major sectors in the country.

 

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