Environment, Social, Governance

empty Description of term "Environment, Social, Governance"

Al Mal, Qatar authorisation withdrawn

Following an investigation into the activities of Al Mal, an authorised firm in the Qatar Financial Centre (“QFC”), the QFC Regulatory Authority has taken the decision to withdraw the authorisation of Al Mal.

Ninth Harvard University Forum on Islamic Finance: Building Bridges Across Financial Communities

The Ninth Harvard University Forum on Islamic Finance, hosted by Harvard Law School’s Islamic Finance Project, will be held at Austin Hall, Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Massachusetts on March 27th- 28th, 2010. The theme of the conference will be “Building Bridges across Financial Communities” as it relates to the field of Islamic Finance.

The two-day conference will comprise a unique experimental structure: Three plenary sessions will explore the sub-themes of Faith and Finance, Social Responsibility, and Islamic Finance after the Global Crisis.

Full text:


Bahrain-Based Gulf Finance House Raised to 'CCC-/C'; Outlook Negative

Press Release

*Bahrain-based Gulf Finance House earlier today completed the partial extension of a
$100 million facility. We consider this as another "distressed exchange" due to
partial extension of initial maturity. *We then reassessed GFH's creditworthiness
and raised the ratings to 'CCC-/C'. *The outlook is negative and reflects our
opinion of GFH's very weak liquidity position, from a rating standpoint, because it
still faces challenges to meet debt repayments coming due in the very near term.

PARIS (Standard & Poor's) March 3, 2010--Standard & Poor's Ratings Services today
said it raised its long- and short-term counterparty credit ratings on Bahrain-based
Gulf Finance House G.S.C. (GFH) to 'CCC-/C' from 'SD/SD' (selective default). The
outlook is negative.

"The rating action follows GFH's completion of the partial extension of maturity of
a $100 million facility," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Goeksenin Karagoez.

The first tranche of this facility was a $50 million payment due March 3, 2010, with
the remainder due on March 3, 2011. We understand that GFH has obtained consent for

Shari’ah Being Used by a Debtor to Avoid Payment Obligations Under a Wakala Agreement

Blom Developments Bank SAL (“Blom”) placed US$10 million with The Investment Dar Company KSCC (“TID”)under a wakala agreement (the “Agreement.

The Agreement was governed by English law and provided that TID would invest the Capital Sum (as the agent of Blom) in a shari’ah compliant manner. The Agreement further provided that at the end of the investment period TID had an obligation to pay to Blom the Capital Sum together with the anticipated agreed profit (the “Profit”).

TID failed to fulfill its obligations under the Agreement to pay to Blom the Capital Sum and the Profit at the end of the investment period. As a result Blom brought a summary judgment application in the English High Court. The Court ordered TID to pay to Blom the Capital Sum (but not the Profit).

AAOIFI Standards to be translated into Russian

The Bahrain-based Accounting and Auditing Organisation for Islamic Financial Institutions (AAOIFI) is co-operating with the Mufties Council of Russia to translate AAOIFI's international Islamic finance standards into Russian language. The translated standards are expected to help regulatory authorities and financial institutions in developing Islamic finance in jurisdictions that use Russian language as their official language.

Islamic Microfinance - Business Proposal Competition

CGAP, Deutsche Bank, Islamic Development Bank, and Grameen-Jameel announced the Islamic Microfinance Challenge 2010: Innovating Sustainable, Scalable, and Market-Driven Models. The contest is a joint initiative to promote the innovative design of Shariah-compliant products for Islamic microfinance clients.

The organizers are seeking original Islamic microfinance business proposals which are profitable, sustainable, scalable, and Shariah-compliant. Finalists of this competition will be awarded with grant funds as well as need-based technical support to launch a pilot project of their proposed business idea.

It offers a unique opportunity to showcase innovative business ideas, gain industry-wide recognition, and benefit from the funds and technical expertise of leading institutions in the microfinance and Islamic finance sectors.


The Bank of Kuwait and the Middle East (BKME) expects 2010 to prove a year of major and strategic changes towards operation as an Islamic Sharia-compliant bank as of the second quarter, upon completion of procedures to obtain the required Amiri Decree approving the conversion.

Gassner's picture

IslamicFinance.de invites its users to betatest the Islamic Finance WIKI

Dear User,

as salamu alaikum,

In these days I am testing the new function of IslamicFinance.de: The Islamic Finance WIKI.

For long time I felt a need to have a proper encyclopaedia on Islamic finance, which is up to date and easily accessible for all industry members.

Now I started, initially with a small glossary, which I want to add up. Also from the start other experts are invited to contribute: Just in the same way as the famous online Wikipedia was created. We do not need 1.000.000 entries, but just about 1000 good entries would help spreading knowledge and improving best practice. With far more than 5,000 visitors to IslamicFinance.de each month pretty realistic, dont you think?

So, please visit:


and share some comments.

Editing rights for the time (till I have got a team of volunteers) on manual request to avoid spamming (yes, IslamicFinance.de was already spammed with comments about non Sharia compliant activities...). Please indicate your background, it will not be stored on the website itself, just for me to avoid unpleasant vandalization of the site itself.

New watchdog set to probe Sharia violations on finance

A new watchdog is to be launched to investigate suspected violations of Sharia-compliance among Islamic finance products, Arabian Business has learned.

India banking reforms focus on Islamic finance

India is planning to overhaul regulation of its financial system to attract investments from the Gulf and to encourage its largely unbanked Muslim population to save money in a way compliant with their religion, a senior government adviser has said. K Rahman Khan, deputy chairman of India's upper house of parliament, told the Financial Times that the ruling Congress Party is proposing reforms to the finance ministry, the Reserve Bank of India and Securities and Exchange Board of India to allow for the introduction of Islamic financial services.

Fitch: 2010 Outlook for Saudi Banks more positive after mixed 2009

Fitch Ratings says that 2009 proved to be, as anticipated by Fitch, a challenging year for banks in Saudi Arabia as the full impact of the global economic crisis caught up with the region, reflected in rising loan impairments and a rapid slowdown in lending. The preliminary 2009 results released by the 10 main Saudi commercial banks rated by Fitch showed different trends in net income in 2009, with Q409 being the worst quarter of the year.

Fitch notes that five of the 10 largest commercial banks operating in Saudi Arabia showed improvements in their net income y-o-y, but overall growth in total net income for all 10 banks stagnated in 2009 y-o-y (2008: -14.2%). Areas of concern included lower domestic economic growth, mainly reflecting lower oil revenues and exports, and the negative impact on asset quality of recent rapid credit growth as well as problematic exposures to some large Saudi trading groups (primarily Algosaibi and Saad). The agency has yet to see the full audited financial statements of the Saudi banks but will review them fully in the near future. At this stage, Fitch does not expect to see further downgrades of Individual Ratings in 2010.

LSE and Harvard Law School invite to public lecture in London: Global Perspective on Islamic Finance

The London School of Economics and Harvard Law School invite you to attend a public lecture in London:

Title: Global Perspective on Islamic Finance
Date: February 24, 2010
Time: 6:30-8pm
Venue: Hong Kong Theatre, Clement House, London School of Economics


Stephen Green, Group Chairman, HSBC Holdings &
Dr M. Umer Chapra, Adviser, Islamic Development Bank, IRTI

Chair: Professor Sarah Worthington, LSE Pro-Director,

Please spread the word around among your colleagues and friends in London who can benefit from this public lecture.

This event is free and open to all with no ticket required. Entry is on a first come, first served basis.

For questions, contact:

IFP at 617-496-2296 or 2297 or ifp@law.harvard.edu

Thomson Reuters unveils risk management solution for Islamic Banking

Thomson Reuters announced the launch of a risk management system specifically tailored for Islamic banking.

Kondor+ Suite for Islamic Banking is a real time trade and risk management solution, which will provide full front-to-back and cross-asset coverage for Islamic banks as well as Islamic windows in conventional banks.

Bank Negara pressing ahead with Shariah guidelines

Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), the central bank, is pressing ahead with developing a series of Shariah parameters that would provide a standard guidance on applying the respective Shariah contracts in Islamic finance.

In fact, BNM in December 2009 published its latest draft concept paper -- a Shariah Parameter Reference 3 (SPRC 3) -- on the Mudarabah contract. The paper has been sent to various market players in the Islamic finance industry for feedback. This follows the publishing in October 2009 of "Concept Paper -- Guidelines on Takaful Operational Framework" which outlines the parameters governing the operational processes of the Takaful business.

Report on Social Responsibility Trends at Islamic Financial Institutions

The report on Social Responsibility Trends at Islamic Financial Institutions presents the results of an extensive survey on Social Responsibility at Islamic Financial Institutions (IFIs) carried out during summer and fall of 2009 by DinarStandard and Dar Al Istithmar with the support of the Accounting and Auditing Organisation for Islamic Financial Institutions (AAOIFI).

Some key findings of the survey were:

Clients: 100% of respondents answered yes to having a policy to screen prospective clients which is actively implemented. Similarly 97% have an organizational policy that deals with client responsibly.

Employees: 83% of respondents’ state having policies that provide equal opportunity to all their employees, 93% have policies that ensures merit-based salary and promotion, and 86% having policies that specifically prohibits any kind of discrimination. However, when it comes to having policy to monitor employees from different backgrounds and gender, the response was mix with only 52% admitting to having such a monitoring policy and 48% not having any such policy.

World Economic Forum: Values For The Post Crisis Economy

"The current economic crisis should warn us to fundamentally rethink the development of the moral framework
and the regulatory mechanisms that underpin our economy, politics and global interconnectedness. It would be a wasted opportunity for all of us if we pretended that the crisis was simply a momentary hurdle. If we want to keep society together, then a sense of community and solidarity are more important now than ever before.The most fundamental question today is whether we can adopt a more communitarian spirit or whether we will fall back into old habits and excesses, thereby further undermining social peace.

This Report, Faith and the Global Agenda:Values for the Post-Crisis Economy, produced by the World Economic Forum in collaboration with Georgetown University, is the first effort of its kind, seeking to enhance understanding of the values that will be vital for our collective future and the positive role that faith plays in articulating those values."

Download at:


France: Islamic Finance Seminar on Risk Management in Islamic Finance

If Islamic finance has been more resilient to the crisis than its conventional counterpart, it is because it is less risky, have found many industry players. However, this statement does not reflect the inherent risks of Islamic banks themselves. [...]

For this conference co-organized by the University Paris-Dauphine and Arrow Financial Consulting, six roundtables will address the specifics of risk management in Islamic banks (credit risk, market risk, operational risk, legal risk, risk liquidity risks in order of religious interpretation.

Paris Thursday, January 28, 2010

University Paris-Dauphine

Raymond Aron Hall 2 nd Floor

Place du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny 75775 PARIS Cedex 16



Ninth Harvard University Forum on Islamic Finance, Building Bridges Across Financial Communities,

March 27-28, 2010, Harvard Law School, Cambridge, MA., USA

The Ninth Harvard University Forum on Islamic Finance, hosted by Harvard Law School’s Islamic Finance Project, will be held at Austin Hall, Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Massachusetts on March 27th- 28th, 2010. The theme of the conference will be “Building Bridges across Financial Communities” as it relates to the field of Islamic Finance.

Gassner's picture

Calling Islamic financial institutions to become member of the United Nations Finance Initiative

IslamicFinance.de is calling Islamic financial institutions to become member of the UNEP Finance Inititiave to learn and contribute to international best practice in ethical and faith based finance:

"UNEP FI is a global partnership between UNEP and the financial sector. Over 180 institutions, including banks, insurers and fund managers, work with UNEP to understand the impacts of environmental and social considerations on financial performance."

membership information package:

Syndicate content