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IFN Annual Guide 2017

The markets are winding down and the festive season is fast approaching. But with a year once again marked by political turmoil and turbulent trends, performance has been subdued and prices precarious. Against this backdrop of uncertainty, our comprehensive and industry-renowned Annual Guide brings you a comprehensive overview of the past 12 months — shining a spotlight on the global Islamic finance industry and the opportunities and challenges it has faced throughout the course of 2016.

The year has been a challenging one, following on as it did from the turbulence and volatility of 2015 – which saw oil prices crash over 60% and severe commodity unrest. Fast forward one year and at first glance, it could seem that not much has changed. Southeast Asia might be rolling in liquidity but trouble is rapidly appearing over the horizon with ongoing pressure from China’s flash crash, plummeting currencies in major Islamic finance markets including Malaysia and Indonesia, and an exodus of overseas investors from Asian bond markets.

In the Middle East, the oil price might have stabilized but governments are still suffering — as demonstrated by the vast sovereign bond issuances of the past year and significant declines in bank deposits. And of course, the twin elephants in the room — are the traditional safe havens of the US and Europe safe no more, following the Brexit decision and the Trump victory?

But it is not all bad news. Strong liquidity in Asia is still attracting investors, with multiple new Islamic funds launching over recent months. The squeezed bank lending situation in the Middle East has benefited the capital markets, and corporate issuance is on the rise with total global Sukuk volumes exceeding US$40 billion in 2016 — up 22% from just US$32 billion the previous year. Islamic investment is still flooding to UK as the plummeting pound sterling makes property a cheap bet; while Trump’s pro business stance has reassured investors in the stability of the US market.

2016 was the year of the sovereign Sukuk — we saw an extraordinary surge of exceptional deals come to market, of a size and yield that bodes well for the future of the industry. And of course new markets are also providing excitement and entertainment. Iran has taken steady steps forwards in rejoining the global marketplace, while Turkey recently reformed its tax regulations to make the issuance of corporate Sukuk more appealing and Africa offers continued opportunities for growth and development.

We have seen promising updates in the fields of governance and regulation, which should go some way towards standardizing the industry yet further. Another major trend is Islamic fintech, with several major developments in 2016 making this one of the most exciting trends we have seen in some time.

So as we move forward into 2017 the outlook is both uncertain and optimistic; exciting and intimidating. No one can know what the future will bring, but as the performance of the Islamic markets over past 12 months has shown, Shariah compliant finance is flexible, innovative and strong — giving it the capacity to handle whatever the future may bring as long as we remain true to the moral and ethical principles that underpin the industry.

As such, IFN is delighted to once again offer a multitude of material designed to inform, educate and inspire our readers across the world. I hope you enjoy our IFN Annual Guide 2017 and I wish you all the best for the new year.

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Content in IFN Annual Guide 2017

The coming challenge: IFRS 9

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Indonesia: Growing dominance of government Sukuk

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Iran’s financial system: The development of Shariah compliant instruments and institutions

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Bahrain places a large bet on growth

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Harmonization needed for development

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Islamic finance of Pakistan: A journey of continuous success

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Ample areas for growth and innovation within Islamic asset management

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Are Islamic banks better regulated than conventional banks?

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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The state of Malaysia’s Sukuk market: Resilience driving expectations

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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The dawn of Islamic tourism: If there is a will, there is a way

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Venture capital investing moving from strength to strength

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Opportunities ripe for picking for courageous Islamic finance players

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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NBF Islamic: New products, new services, new markets

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

Interviews

Evaluations on Turkey’s current economic and financial situation

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Alternative asset classes to the fore in 2017?

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Sukuk: The effective diversification tool in a volatile market

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Islamic finance industry in Nigeria growing despite recession

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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UAE: Slow and steady it goes

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Positive year ahead for Islamic finance in Afghanistan

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Aircraft financing a potentially win-win proposition for Islamic financiers

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Italy: Huge potential but slow implementation

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Much work needed to develop Islamic products for Islamic family offices

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Offshore jurisdictions to remain popular domiciles for Islamic finance

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Islamic finance in the UK: The impact of Brexit

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Australia awaits tax reforms for Islamic finance

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Crowdfunding: Building on the momentum

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Will challengers come to the fore in 2017?

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Japan: Small head but great wit

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Islamic banking and risk management

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Mixed prospects for Oman’s Islamic finance industry going into 2017

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Real estate continues to be the focus of Islamic finance in the US

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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The real deal with Islamic capital market trends

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Kenya heading in the right direction

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Islamic finance: Delivering actions today for a sustainable tomorrow

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Islamic finance in Bangladesh

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Shariah compliant derivatives – a new era?

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Mirror, mirror on the wall…

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Kuwait to continue growth trajectory

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Accelerating change

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Qatar: 2016, a year of change

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Bosnia: Strong Islamic banking growth despite regulatory challenges

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Global mergers and acquisitions in an unpredictable political and economic environment

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Luxembourg and Islamic finance

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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GCC sovereign issuance in 2016 paves the way for continued growth

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Islamic finance in Russia: What lies ahead?

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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China’s ‘Belt and Road’ initiative – how Islamic finance can play a part

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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The Islamic finance education landscape

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Islamic microfinance between charity and commercialization: A market outlook

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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The outlook ahead

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: A year in transition

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Islamic finance finds a perfect market in France

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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The use of Shariah-based structures continues its growth in the private equity sector

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Strengthening global connectivity and cross-border trade in OIC member countries

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Singapore staying focused amid economic uncertainty

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Continued volatility marks a cautious outlook for the coming year

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

Editor`s Note

Hong Kong: Proactive approach needed to take Islamic finance to greater heights

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Real estate remains highly attractive to Islamic investors

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Malta: An opportunity for SMEs

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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The challenge of limitations

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Adaptation, innovation and evolution crucial to South Africa’s Islamic finance industry

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Islamic finance 2017: Another difficult year

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

Features

Inceptive period for Islamic finance in India

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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The implementation process of Islamic finance in Morocco: Comprehensive but slow

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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Islamic finance development in Tunisia

Friday, 16 Dec 2016 | IFN Annual Guide 2017

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