Nairobi hosts global forum on Islamic finance

Nairobi will Tuesday host an international forum on Islamic microfinance, which is expected to shine the spotlight on the budding local Islamic finance sector.

Delegates from at least 35 countries will converge in the City to deliberate on latest developments and trends in the industry including policies and standards required to nurture the sector.

The sector is based on Islamic principles that discourage interest, speculation and emphasise on ethical investment.

According to the Islamic Financial Services Board, the sector hit a global value of $1.88 trillion (Sh189.88 trillion) in 2015 and is forecast to reach $3.4 trillion (Sh343.40 trillion) by the end of 2018.

The two-day forum at the Hotel Intercontinental has been organised by Dubai-based Al Huda Centre for Islamic Banking and Economics (CIBE).

The organisation, which operates in at least 25 countries, conducts research, advisory and capacity building activities to support growth of the industry.

“The forum seeks to enhance awareness about what Islamic microfinance has to offer in terms of social development and poverty alleviation,” said Muhammad Zubair Mughal, chief executive of Al Huda CIBE.

The forum will be accompanied by Islamic microfinance awards, the best performing personalities and institutions driving positive developments in the industry and a two-day workshop on how to develop, operate and sustain Islamic microfinance institutions.