Kuala Lumpur , 27 March 2008

SC unveils key ICM initiatives at International Islamic Capital Market Forum

The Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) today unveiled several new initiatives which reinforce its role as a leading advocate of Islamic Capital Market (ICM) development.

The initiatives include:

  • Strengthening partnerships through collaborative efforts
  • The establishment of an International Advisory Committee and
  • Convening of the semi-annual International Islamic Capital Market Forum

Two Memoranda of Understandings (MOUs) were signed. The MOU with Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM) will facilitate the compilation and publication of global Shariah Rulings, and the MOU with Universiti Malaya (UM) will establish a Visiting Scholar Programme.

These were signed at the opening of the inaugural International Islamic Capital Market Forum in Kuala Lumpur which was officiated by Yang Berhormat Deputy Finance Minister Yang Berhormat Datuk Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah.

In her welcoming address, the SC Chairman Dato’ Zarinah Anwar said “the outcome of these initiatives will have a positive and significant impact on the overall Malaysian capital market.”

She added ” Malaysia’s Islamic capital market has experienced phenomenal growth and raised the bar globally in terms of product innovation and end-to-end Shariah compliant services.”

The forum, themed “Product Innovation – Islamic ETF and Commodity Murabahah”, provides a dynamic platform for Malaysian and internationally-based Shariah experts, industry practitioners, regulators and investors to trade their knowledge and experience on Shariah products and principles.

World’s first compilation of Shariah rulings

The first MOU between the SC and USIM will facilitate the world-first compilation of fatwas (Shariah rulings) that will be produced in several volumes within three years. The MOU was signed by SC Managing Director Dato Dr Nik Ramlah Mahmood and Professor Dr Hj Abdul Samat Musa, Acting Director of USIM”s World Fatwa Management Research Institute (INFAD).

The first of its kind in more than a century, the compilation marks a milestone development in the ICM industry as it will provide academics and practitioners a single source of reference of all rulings culled from major jurisdictions around the world. The first volume of the compilation is expected to be produced by early 2009.

Visiting Scholar Programme

The second MOU was signed by Dato’ Zarinah and UM Vice Chancellor, Datuk Rafiah Salim. Under the programme, renowned scholars and visiting professors in Islamic finance will be sponsored and attached with UM for up to three months. This MOU formalises their collaboration on the ICM Visiting Scholar Programme which will promote and enhance scholarship and research in ICM.

International Advisory Committee

The SC has established an International Advisory Committee (IAC) to provide strategic guidance and international perspectives for the projects. The six-member IAC, chaired by Dato’ Zarinah, comprises:

  • Dr Mohamed Ali Elgari, Shariah Scholar, Saudi Arabia
  • Iqbal Khan, Founding Board Member and CEO, Fajr Capital, UK
  • Abdulkader Thomas, President and CEO, SHAPE Financial Corporation, USA and Kuwait
  • Sheikh Nizam Yaqubi, Shariah Scholar, Bahrain, and
  • Dato’ Salman Younis, Managing Director, Kuwait Finance House, Malaysia.

Two of the IAC members, Dr Mohamed Ali Elgari and Abdulkader Thomas, were present at the Forum to speak on product innovation in Islamic Exchange-traded Funds (ETF) and Commodity Murabahah.

The Forum, which featured renowned speakers from Malaysia, the Middle East and US, was attended by over 300 local and international participants.