ISTANBUL, TURKEY | APRIL 19, 2012
The IFSB Gears Up for the 9th Annual IFSB Summit with Confirmed Speakers and Timely Topics
The 9th Annual Summit of the Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB) is scheduled to be held on 16 - 17 May 2012 at the Swissotel The Bosphorus in Istanbul. The Central Bank of Turkey is the host of the Summit.
Twenty prominent international speakers led by H.E. Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin, Managing Director of the World Bank and William Coen, Deputy Secretary-General, Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, Bank for International Settlements; and including six major central bank governors have confirmed their participation in the 9th Annual Summit of the Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB) which is scheduled to be held on 16 - 17 May 2012 at the Swissotel The Bosphorus in Istanbul. The Central Bank of Turkey is the host of the Summit.
The international financial system, post-subprime crisis, may never be the same again. Over the last few years, the watch words have been regulatory reform, especially the Basel III capital and liquidity framework reforms; systemic risk and risk mitigation; surveillance and stress testing and above all, financial stability. Globally, the focus has been on learning the lessons of the crisis with a new found emphasis on linking finance to serve the real economy.
In welcoming these developments, Islamic finance has not been immune to the impact and reverberations of the crisis. Yet, while profitability has come under pressure, the industry’s market penetration has improved and important sectors such as the sukuk market have thrived. Despite the expansion in cross-border financing opportunities, however, the looming challenge is to attain scale and depth in financial markets through strengthened regulatory frameworks, and through greater alignment and cross border cooperation between regulators on the one hand, and market players on the other.
As such, the theme of this year’s Summit, “Global Financial Reforms: The Changing Regulatory Model and Islamic Finance” aims to evaluate whether reforms in financial regulation structure and prudential standards equip the Islamic financial services industry in addressing its future challenges. It also aims at identifying the priority areas in the prudential regulation of Islamic finance that may need focus and attention by regulators and market players alike.
The session topics reflect the pertinence of the Summit theme at hand. These include: “International Regulatory Initiatives to Enhance Global Financial Stability”, “Impact of International Regulatory Initiatives on the Islamic Financial Services Industry”, “Regulatory Harmonisation and Cross-border Linkages in Islamic Finance”, “Global Financial Infrastructure of Islamic Finance” and “Global Regulatory Reform and the Prospects for the Islamic Financial Services Industry”.
H.E. Dr. Erdem Basci, Governor of the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey; and his fellow regulators who have confirmed their participation including H.E. Yves Mersch, Governor of the Banque centrale du Luxembourg, H.E.Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz; Governor of Bank Negara Malaysia; H.E. Sanusi Lamido Aminu Sanusi, Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria; H.E. Dr. Jihad Al Wazir, Governor, Palestine Monetary Authority; and H.E. Sultan bin Nasser Al Suwaidi, Governor of the Central Bank of the UAE.
Also participating will be H.E. Dr. Abdul Aziz Al Hinai, Vice President Finance of the Islamic Development Bank; Dr. Ghiath Shabsigh, Chief, Middle East and Central Asia Division, Monetary & Capital Markets Department, International Monetary Fund; Abayomi Alawode, Manager, Financial Systems Global Practice, The World Bank and Mahmoud Abu Shamma, CEO, International Islamic Liquidity Management Corporation (IILM).
Other thought leaders and CEOs of the Islamic financial institutions who will be speaking at the Summit are Professor Dr. Necdet Sensoy, Member of the Board, Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey; Dr. Ibrahim M. Turhan, Chairman and CEO, Istanbul Stock Exchange, Turkey; Professor Volker Nienhaus, Former President, University of Marburg, Germany; Daud Vicary Abdullah, President / Chief Executive Officer, International Centre for Education in Islamic Finance (INCEIF); Baljeet Kaur Grewal, Managing Director and Vice Chairman, KFH Research Ltd., Malaysia; Iqbal Khan, Chief Executive Officer, Fajr Capital, United Arab Emirates; Richard Thomas OBE, Chief Executive Officer, Gatehouse Bank Plc., United Kingdom; Badlisyah Abdul Ghani, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, CIMB Islamic Bank Berhad, Malaysia and Shaykh Yusuf Talal DeLorenzo, Chief Shariah Officer and Board Member, Shariah Capital Inc., United Arab Emirates.
The main proceedings will be preceded by three pre-Summit events. The IFSB Country Showcases will feature the Turkey Country Showcase organised by the Central Bank of Turkey and the Malaysia Country Showcase organised by Bank Negara Malaysia, which will be held on 15 May 2012. In the afternoon of the same day, there will be a Special Session on Promoting Financial Inclusion through Islamic Microfinance.
The IFSB Country Showcases are effectively platforms for selected IFSB member and non-member countries to portray their Islamic finance initiatives, incentives and experiences in adopting and promoting the growth of a sound and stable Islamic financial services industry, and presented to a high profile, focused group of potential investors and stakeholders. It is also an excellent opportunity for networking and opening doors to potential investments and business partnerships - from among the IFSB members as well as the local, regional and international financial community - specifically those attending the Summit.
The Special Session on Islamic Microfinance is especially timely, given its growing importance together with financing small-and-medium-sized-enterprises (SMEs) especially their role in generating youth employment and helping towards alleviating poverty in developing countries. Thus, for instance, the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) has already allocated US$250 million to Egypt and Tunisia to finance projects which would generate youth employment and entrepreneurship. At the same time the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), the private sector funding arm of the IDB Group, has recently launched a SR1 billion SME Fund for Saudi Arabia and plans to launch similar vehicles for other countries as well.
Microfinance, stresses the IFSB, has emerged as a viable proposition in offering financial services to low-income groups. It serves as an important tool to access unbankable individuals, especially in Muslim countries, and is seen to be an effective tool in poverty alleviation efforts. Despite its global success, there are genuine concerns emerging in the industry over the efficacy of microfinance with regards to whether the initiatives actually achieve their desired objectives. This is due to evident failures of such initiatives in certain countries.
In view of this development, and in line with recommendations of IFSB-IDB 10-Year Framework and Strategies for Development of Islamic Financial Services Industry, the IFSB Special Session on ‘Promoting Financial Inclusion through Islamic Microfinance’ is the first IFSB programme to look into this issue. It aims to gain an understanding on global practices of Islamic microfinance, and to explore the effectiveness of the existing structure, as well as the need for a specific regulatory and supervisory framework for Islamic microfinance as a social support mechanism for the growing sector.
The Special Session on Islamic Microfinance will see the participation of H.E Yaseen Anwar, Governor, State Bank of Pakistan, H.E. Dr. Mohamed Khair Ahmed Elzubear, Governor, Central Bank of Sudan, Professor Dr M. Azmi Omar, Director General, Islamic Research and Training Institute (IRTI), IDB Group; Ali Sakti, Researcher, Islamic Banking Directorate, Bank Indonesia; Jahangir Alam, Executive Director, Central Bank of Bangladesh; and Michael Tarazi, Senior Policy Specialist, Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP). The two topics that will be discussed are the “Development of Islamic Microfinance and Selected Case Studies” and “Challenges in Microfinance from the Regulatory and Sharī`ah Perspectives”. There will also be a panel discussion on “Islamic Microfinance Institutions: The Way Forward”.
For more details on the 9th IFSB Summit and pre-Summit events, please visit www.ifsbistanbul2012.com or email email@example.com