Questioning the economic value of current Islamic banks

Many industry observers assert that all Islamic banking products in essence are replicas of conventional banking products, be they Islamic deposits or financing products based on leasing or trade-based contracts. A replica, however, by its very nature and definition is inferior to the original, and should sell for a significantly lower price. Islamic banking products are certainly not replicas in this sense, as in most cases they happen to be more expensive than their conventional counterparts. It is therefore not a co-incidence that it is more popular in the countries where Muslims have higher per-capita income and wealth. Within other countries, Islamic banking and finance is serving the relatively affluent segments of the society.