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IFN Annual Guide 2018

A turbulent year winds to close with hope on the horizon

2017 is drawing to a close, the frenetic activity of the fourth quarter is winding down and the holiday season is upon us once again. This year has been marked by major events and signposted by scandal, but despite the ongoing pressures we have witnessed an industry both resilient and robust, contributing to positive performance across multiple asset classes. The strength and sophistication of the global Islamic finance markets is displayed to impressive effect in the 2017 edition of our industry-renowned Annual Guide, which this year features a comprehensive overview of the industry from its most respected experts and experienced practitioners.

The past year has had its ups and downs, with oil prices staging a slight recovery and interest rates remaining slow, sustaining confidence in emerging markets and supporting investor activity across the Middle East and Asia. The rising budget deficits of oil-producing nations sparked a sovereign surge that turned 2017 into an exceptional year for Sukuk volumes – with the market once again approaching the US$100 billion mark boosted by massive state issuances.

One of the biggest stories in the Sukuk sector was the entry of Saudi Arabia with its giant US$9 billion debut Sukuk in the first quarter, followed by regular and substantial local currency issuances that sparked significant over-subscription and a surge of investor interest towards the Kingdom.

But other sovereigns too have tapped the market, with giant issuances from Oman, Indonesia and Pakistan as well as a third Sukuk from Hong Kong and new entrants from across Africa sparking renewed hope for the continent as it continues on its Islamic finance journey.

The Dana Gas controversy offered a challenge to the industry, and one which continues to rumble as of writing. The question of Shariah compliance is integral to the Islamic debt capital market and the issue went to the heart of investor fears around the stability and security of Islamic structures. However, the decision of the UK courts to uphold the duty of the issuer to the Sukukholders has done much to reassure the market, and the question has contributed to renewed calls for standardization that are echoing ever more loudly around the world.

The GCC sanctions against Qatar were another surprise this year, providing practical challenges and raising geopolitical concerns across the Gulf. However, the country appears to have adapted to a new normal with growth and investment figures stabilizing, and we can but hope that the new year brings reconciliation to the region.

In Asia, Islamic finance continues to develop apace and Malaysia remains at the forefront of innovation. One of the biggest steps forward this year has been the successful issuance of multiple green Sukuk in the country, setting a worldwide example and achieving a new ASEAN-wide framework that could kickstart a ew revolution in socially responsible Sukuk.

Fintech is another area that is taking off in a big way – with advances across the world. Malaysia, Singapore, the UK, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain… all of these locations have launched incubators and accelerators to encourage and expand fintech, while IFN itself launched the pioneering new Islamic Fintech Landscape to size the industry. Watch this space for more developments in the new year.

As we move forward into 2018 the future 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.

IFN is delighted to once again offer a multitude of material designed to inform, educate and inspire our readers across the world.

Lauren McAughtry
Group Managing Editor

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Content in IFN Annual Guide 2018

Strong Islamic finance potential in Africa

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Finding a footing in the US

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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The UK strengthens its position as Islamic finance center

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic finance growth outpaces conventional counterpart in the UAE

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic banking to increase market share through possible participation from Halkbank

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Tunisia: Challenges and prospects

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic banking is a game-changer in Tanzania

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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The changing landscape of Islamic finance in Sri Lanka

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic finance in Spain

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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South Africa’s economic challenges may present opportunities for Islamic finance development

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Critical success factors for Islamic finance growth in Singapore

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Senegal hoping for miracles in 2018

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Saudi Arabia: A country in transition

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Russia – moving forward

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Qatar – an unexpectedly tough year

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Legislative initiatives for Islamic banking and finance in the Philippines

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Prospects for Islamic banking in Palestine

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Pakistan moving toward greater strength and stability

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Oman – a country of untapped potential

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Offshore jurisdictions to continue as domiciles for Islamic finance investment

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

IFN Reports

Nigeria’s maiden sovereign Sukuk issuance a milestone in its history

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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A challenging start for Islamic finance in Morocco

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Malta: Cultivating Islamic finance in the fortress island

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic finance in the Maldives reaches zenith of influence with strong political will

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Sustainability of Malaysia’s Sukuk market: Strong domestic demand driving resilience

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Ethical finance in Luxembourg

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Kuwait: 2018 a year to watch the Sukuk market

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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A short-term perspective on the status quo of Islamic banking in Lebanon

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Kenya’s emerging landscape of Islamic finance

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Sharp revival of the Islamic finance industry in the Republic of Kazakhstan

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Can Japan survive? A turning-point in the practice of Islamic finance

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Cote d’Ivoire remains vital region for the development of Islamic finance in West Africa

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Ireland: A potential destination for investors looking beyond London and the UK

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic finance development at a slow pace while Italian economy recovers

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Iran’s financial system – toward development of Shariah compliant instruments and institutions

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Indonesia’s Islamic finance initiatives: Impact to be seen

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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A slow but promising path for Shariah banking in India

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Hong Kong should consolidate leading position in Islamic finance without further delay

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Germany – emerging market for Islamic banking

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic finance to emerge as an opportunity in France to get the best out of finance

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Egypt looks ahead to economic recovery via Islamic finance in 2018

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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China’s foreign trade to the new opportunities and challenges in 2018

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Innovative firms taking the lead in Islamic finance

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic finance in Brunei Darussalam

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic economy and finance in Bosnia and Herzegovina: Its best to come

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic finance marches ahead in Bangladesh

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Embracing innovative strategy approaches in financial services

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Australian Islamic finance growing steadily

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic finance here to stay in Afghanistan

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Moribund to energized: The effect of fintech on innovation in Islamic finance

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic finance competing with one hand tied behind its back without level-playing field

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Takaful in the Middle East: Opportunities and challenges

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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European Takaful emergence

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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After a challenging 2017, will re-Takaful rise to the next level?

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic structured finance – from a notable year to slower progress

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Shariah standards: A continuous effort to strengthen compliance culture

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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The Shariah governance system

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Sukuk: Slow and steady

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Squeezed liquidity and geopolitical risk remain key themes for 2018

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Responsible finance brings rays of hope for 2018

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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The growing influence of REITs

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic banks to remain stable although not immune to adverse economic developments

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic project and infrastructure finance: State of the market

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic banks’ financial performance and its effect on mergers and acquisitions

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic liquidity management issue is not as simple as it sounds

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Global Islamic finance holds steady in uncertain times

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Opportunities for Islamic treasury via technology and innovation

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic microfinance: Can fintech revolution accelerate growth?

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic leasing: A decent year for Shariah compliance

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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2018 could be the most important year for Islamic crowdfunding yet

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic institutional investments set for greater heights

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Considerable growth in 2018 and beyond for Islamic cross-border capital flows

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Participation asset management: A long way to go

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Commodities trading and Islamic finance: A year of volatility, stability and change

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Flying high – commercial aviation performance and opportunities for Islamic financing

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

IFN Reports

Recent developments in Islamic capital markets – green Sukuk

Friday, 22 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic banking in the fourth industrial revolution

Friday, 22 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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IPOs on the up

Friday, 22 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Islamic finance education: A global outlook

Friday, 22 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Debt capital markets in Islamic finance grow steadily with cautious outlook

Friday, 22 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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Expected growth of Islamic finance in 2018

Friday, 22 Dec 2017 | IFN Annual Guide 2018

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