Islamic Finance Thrives in Kenya

Islamic banking was introduced in 2008 in Kenya when the first two Islamic Banks, Community Bank (FCB) and Gulf African Bank (GAB), opened their doors. Islamic finance has evolved rapidly into insurance, investments, and pensions which are in line with the Islamic law. Owing to the success of the two Islamic Banks in terms of attracting deposits from the Muslim community, other commercial banks have quickly opened up Islamic segments to compete for the Muslim wallets. Currently, 10 out of the 42 commercial Banks in Kenya have created such segments. However, one of the main challenges facing Islamic finance in Kenya is lack of Shari`ah-compliant investment instruments in the financial markets, such as shares, stocks and bonds.