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Malta’s role in the Islamic economy

Malta’s role in the Islamic economy

 

The Middle East has “an increasing appetite for credible,Shari’ah-compliant, liquid securities" the Global Islamic Banking Center of Excellence of EY, one of the largest professional services firms in the world, reported recently.

This appetite is being matched by a record year in Sukuk issuance - Thomson Reuters Zawya Islamic reports that USD 85.8 billion sold during the first eight months, up from USD 75.1 billion during the same period last year.

The Middle East has “an increasing appetite for credible,Shari’ah-compliant, liquid securities, the Global Islamic Banking Center of Excellence of EY, one of the largest professional services firms in the world, reported recently. This appetite is being matched by a record year in Sukuk issuance - Thomson Reuters Zawya Islamic reports that USD 85.8 billion sold during the first eight months, up from USD 75.1 billion during the same period last year.

This explains why the Prime Minister of Malta and the Minister of Economy have recently gone on record stating that the Government of Malta was actively considering whether it should issue a Sukuk to see what the reaction of the markets would be and to give a political message that this is the sort of instrument Malta is in favour of.

No Bolt from the Blue Back in 2009, when giving an overview of the ambitious plans for Malta in the financial services field, the then-current administration had stated their keenness on developing Malta as an Islamic financial centre, confirming this administration’s interest in expanding its growing financial services industry offering to the Arab world. “Malta is comfortable with the Arab world and the Arab world trusts and engages with Malta”, the then Prime Minister Gonzi said[1].

Malta, 60 miles away from Italy’s southernmost point and 180 miles from North Africa, has moved from being an offshore corporate services centre to an onshore financial services jurisdiction. Over the past two decades, it has reformed its finance sector legislation in line with international best practice and is now internationally recognised as a brand denoting excellence in financial services.

It offers financial services operators looking for a European Union-compliant, flexible, domicile, and an attractive cost- and tax-efficient base. Malta, for the past few years, has been contemplating a new dimension to its successful business model by leveraging its physical location as well as its close ties with the Middle East and North Africa to become a regional hub for Islamic finance[2].

 

http://www.businessislamica.com/home/ArticleDetail/156

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