Islamic Finance

Newswrap: Islamic finance

Bangladesh’s Deshbandhu Group to issue $250 million sukuk; Sydney-based Ijarah Finance launches financing for construction sector; Football star Paul Pogba becomes Wahed brand ambassador; Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank launches ‘open banking revolution’; UAE’s ADEX signs export financing agreement with Capital Bank of Jordan.


Bangladesh’s Deshbandhu Group to issue $250 million sukuk

The Deshbandhu Group is to issue a $250 million sukuk in July through the Al Waseelah Sukuk issuance platform, reported Islamic Sustainable. The high-yield sukuk is to have a 9% semi-annual profit rate over six years, and is to be issued in US dollars and Malaysian Ringgit. The Bangladesh based Group is involved in 16 companies, including food, beverages, fibers, textiles, trading, power and properties. The website noted that the sukuk issuance is intended to bolster foreign exports, domestic market share and invest in new technologies and people. The sukuk is not to feature ESG performance indicators but is intended to focus on United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), notably no poverty (SDG 1), gender equality (SDG 5) and decent work and economic growth (SDG 8).

Sydney-based Ijarah Finance launches financing for construction sector

Islamic finance firm Ijarah Finance has developed a Sharia-compliant product for builders and property developers, reported Australian Broker. The product “gives leverage and capability to help builders take on construction projects of up to 5 million Australian dollars ($3.4 million) using a non-interest finance approach known as “Ijarah”, a term in the Arabic language meaning “lease”. Ijarah Finance’s approach adopts the principle of rent to own or “Ijarah Muntahia Bi Tamleek”, which is known as “rent ending with ownership” in Sharia financing,” the website reported. “Our office has been based in south-west Sydney since 2003, so we have many builders and developers of the Muslim faith seeking finance to build commercial developments without undertaking a conventional interest-based loan arrangement,” said Ijarah Finance director Walid (Wally) Ayad to Australian Broker.

Football star Paul Pogba becomes Wahed brand ambassador

French football star Paul Pogba has become an investor and brand ambassador for Islamic fintech company Wahed, reported AhlulBayt News Agency. Pogba joins brand ambassador Khabib Nurmagomedov, a UFC champion. The agency noted that Pogba and Wahed’s CEO Junaid Wahedna “met in September 2021 and found common ground in Wahed’s mission to make ethical investing as accessible and affordable as possible”. Pogba said: “I knew I wanted to be part of it, because growing up, we didn’t have access to a safe way to manage and grow our money.”
Wahedna said “Pogba is a high-performing leader in his industry, which fits with the vision and mission of what we’re trying to achieve,” adding: “We are very excited to welcome him as our new brand ambassador as we continue to reimagine a fairer financial ecosystem.”

Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank launches ‘open banking revolution’

Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) launched its first Application Programming Interface (API) developer portal, allowing fintech developers to use ADIB APIs for the purpose of developing their own applications, according to a press release. The new ADIB API Developer portal will drive Open Banking in the market, allowing fintech developers to build new products that interact seamlessly with ADIB’s platforms. This means that ADIB customers will be able to connect to secure apps and services to their banking easily, including the ability to see accounts held with other providers through their ADIB mobile app. ADIB's Open Banking API platform follows UK Open Banking standards. It aims to provide a range of data to access, use and share by Third-Party Providers (TPPs) such as payment initiators, account aggregators, and other fintechs to deliver new digital services to meet customer and market expectations. Open Banking also offers customers more control over their financial data. The portal complies with the highest international standards on data privacy, ensuring the security of customers’ personal data.

ADIB API developer platform comes as part of ADIB’s vision to become the world’s most innovative Islamic bank. It fully embraces the opportunities of Open Banking which has the potential to revolutionise the industry and the way that people manage their money and do their banking. ADIB API portal will make it really simple for developers to build services that work seamlessly with ADIB’s platforms, and to deliver even more exceptional customer experiences.

UAE’s ADEX signs export financing agreement with Capital Bank of Jordan

Abu Dhabi Exports Office (ADEX), the export-financing arm of Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), signed a financing agreement with Capital Bank of Jordan for a credit line of approximately AED73.4 million ($20 million) to support collaborative efforts to enhance the UAE’s exports to the region and boost economies of the two countries, according to a press release.

The agreement will allow ADEX to open a credit line with Capital Bank to re-lend to importers on competitive terms to buy Emirati goods and services.

“The agreement will enable us to work towards fulfilling the vision of our leadership to develop Emirati export and accelerate the pace of UAE’s economic diversification. This strategic partnership is in line with the UAE Centennial 2071, which aims to take the UAE economy to new heights and double the country’s gross domestic product. The agreement also contributes to consolidating the country’s position as an epicentre of global trade,” said Mohamed Saif Al Suwaidi, Director General of ADFD.


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