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International Islamic Financial Market to hold Strategic Briefing in Bahrain

Bahrain: Tuesday, April 29 - 2008 @ 14:50

The exclusive session, for senior executives of Islamic financial institutions, will also feature IIFM’s Master Agreement for Treasury Placement (MATP), a benchmark document which will be the world’s first standardized Islamic finance contract when it comes to market in the near future.

Industry leaders attending the session, in Bahrain on 8 May 2008, will also be briefed about progress on two other benchmark initiatives being developed by the IIFM.

The event will be held under the patronage of the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB).

“The CBB is delighted to support IIFM’s ground-breaking initiatives, which will serve the Islamic banking and finance industry worldwide,” said Mr. Khalid Hamad, Executive Director, Banking Supervision, at the CBB, who is also Chairman of IIFM.

Uniformity of documentation and products as well as harmonization of market practices across geographic borders is a critical challenge, which the IIFM is addressing in partnership with market players from around the world, he said.

“The upcoming session is aimed at the industry’s key market participants, who are either involved in IIFM projects through its Working Groups or those institutions with business activities relating to IIFM initiatives,” said Mr. Ijlal Alvi, Chief Executive Officer of the IIFM, an international market development institution focused on the development of the global Islamic capital and money markets.

The Briefing Session will open with a presentation on the prospects of the global industry for Islamic finance, as well as trends and opportunities by Chief Economist and Head of Research at Kuwait Finance House (Malaysia), Ms. Baljeet Grewal.

The other panelists include senior executives from UBS, Linklaters, Clifford Chance, Standard Chartered, Al Salam Bank, Al Baraka Banking Group, United International Bank, Ernst & Young, JP Morgan, ABC Islamic Bank and prominent Shari’a scholars, who are actively involved in driving IIFM’s various initiatives, said Mr. Alvi.

A key highlight of the Briefing Session will be the Master Agreement for Treasury Placement (MATP), which is in the final stages of review and which the IIFM expects to unveil in due course.

The MATP will significantly facilitate the Islamic banking industry’s commodity Murabaha transactions, which form the bulk of Islamic money market transactions. Leading international legal firm Clifford Chance is the legal counsel for the project.

Mr. Qudeer Latif, Head of Islamic Finance, at Clifford Chance, said: “We are delighted to be working with the IIFM on this important and exciting initiative. Together with the market participants the objective is to work towards standardized documents that can be adopted by all financial institutions (both Islamic and conventional) thereby enhancing the cost, time and operational efficiencies of Shari’a compliant deposit arrangements being effected”.

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Tuesday, April 29- 2008 @ 14:50 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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