Islamic Finance: A Guide for International Business and Investment (November 2008). This new book produced in association with the Institute of Islamic banking and Insurance, London, and released this week, provides valuable information to international investors and finance professionals about opportunities in the Islamic Finance sector, which is steadily growing at an annual rate of 10 to 15% and commands investments of nearly $800bn.
Islamic financing, still in an early developmental stage, departs from conventional financing in three fundamental ways. First, Islamic financing refrains from investing monies in interest-bearing instruments. This is so because the Quran prohibits charging interest on loaned monies. Second, Islamic financing refrains from investing in speculative investment products, such as options, futures, and derivatives. Third, Islamic financing refrains from investing in companies that manufacture or distribute socially harmful products, which may include weapons, liquors, and contrabands. Although these principles carry several exceptions, Islamic financing is markedly distinguishable from conventional financing. "And, at a time, when derivatives-based markets have failed, Islamic financial instruments, based on the firm establishment of underlying assets are going to be ever more popular."
The book introduces Islamic Finance, explains investment products including mortgages, trade finance, investment banking, Islamic insurance, and explores important regulatory issues. AK-IF