Egypt farm bank launching retail Islamic services

Egypt's Principal Bank for Development and Agricultural Credit (PBDAC) is launching sharia-compliant retail banking services this month to meet increasing demand in rural areas. According to Abdel Rahman Al Kafrawi, head of Islamic transactions at PBDAC, the bank will offer retail finance at 18 Islamic branches through murabaha and musharaka structures. The new Islamic services cover areas including purchases of durable goods and agricultural equipment, the setting up of clinics and medical laboratories, and the financing of education fees. PBDAC launches its new services with a portfolio of 50 million pounds ($7.5 million), that can be raised to 100 million next June based on demand.