Iraqi private banks struggle to cope with limited services, capital

Iraqi private banks are battle against decades of state dominance to win a slice of the asset base from government-run enterprises. It is no surprize than that they have it very hard raising their capital.
The poor credit culture, lack of a modern banking system, and the dominance of state banks aren't helping at all. That is why most business from this country is made with cash especially because they are worried about the security.

Iraq to start Islamic services at two state banks

Beginning with this month, Iraq will offer Islamic banking services at its two main state-owned banks. The ministry revealed in a website posting that the bank will introduce banking services compliant with Islamic Sharia law at the Rafidain and Rashid banks in the next two weeks.

Islamic Microfinance Network instituted in Pakistan

To assemble international Islamic Microfinance organizations under one platform, Islamic Microfinance Network (IMFN) has been established in Lahore – Pakistan. The initial member countries of Islamic Microfinance Network are Iraq, Jordan, Yemen, Ghana, Mauritius and Kazakhstan.
The objective of this network is to provide best methodologies of Islamic microfinance, Shariah guidelines, and lasting relations and manpower to the industry.

Hotels aim to reflect Islamic culture

Companies within the industry are continuing to debate the standards that need to be met to be considered a "Sharia-compliant" hotel.
One such company is Shaza Hotels. The luxury operator, which is a joint venture between Kempinski Hotels and Guidance Hotel Investment Company, based in Paris, is aiming to open hotels that are alcohol-free and "display the values and cultures of the Middle East and North Africa".
Shaza announced plans to manage a luxury hotel in Karbala, Iraq, which is being developed by Range Hospitality, based in Dubai.

Women and Islamic Financing

Fozia Amanulla has grown accustomed to the pressures of negotiating multi-million-ringgit deals during her career in Islamic finance.
At a meeting with a client in Saudi Arabia, where men and women are commonly segregated in public life, she was the only woman in the building -- a fact reinforced by the absence of any toilets for women.
Fozia, one of the first women to lead an Islamic bank in Malaysia, has had no shortage of reminders that her industry -- in which investments are made according to Islamic principles -- is a male-dominated one.
But the number of female faces is multiplying.
Jamelah was appointed managing director of RHB Islamic Bank in Malaysia in 2007 and is believed to have been the first woman in the world to head an Islamic bank.
Linda Eagle, president of the Edcomm Group Banker's Academy, a consulting firm based in New York, said that while branches for women only had existed in Saudi Arabia for decades, such branches had opened in Dubai and Iraq in recent years.

Opening Ceyhan Bank for Islamic Investment and Development in Iraq

The Minister of Finance in the Government of Kurdistan province, Baez Talabani has opened Ceyhan Bank for Islamic Investment and Development. The chairman of Ceyhan sets as goal of opening this bank to provide qualified and new services, on the basis of Islamic shareholders for people, companies and government institutions.

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