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Monday, 3 September 2007

Islamic Financial Industry in Malaysia Continues To Record Growth

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 3 (Bernama) -- The domestic Islamic financial industry continues to record high growth potentials, with sustainable increase of the market share of Islamic finance to the gross domestic product (GDP), said Deputy Finance Minister II, Datuk Dr Awang Adek Hussin today."As at end-2006, total assets of Islamic financial institutions including securities, constituted about 60 percent of GDP compared to just above 40 percent in 2000," he said in his keynote address at Malaysian Institute of Certified Public Accountants-Bursa Malaysia Business Forum, themed 'Malaysia -- The New Arena' here today.Awang Adek said the assets of Islamic banking and takaful industry had increased at double-digit growth rates of about 20 percent for the past five years."The Islamic banking assets accounted for 12 percent of the total banking system while the takaful assets accounted for six percent of the total insurance and takaful industry."This rapid growth in the domestic Islamic finance industry, which has been operating in a robust and comprehensive framework, has supported our achievement in the international arena," he said.He said the four major financial components -- Islamic banking, takaful, Islamic money and capital markets and Islamic fund management -- were integrated and mutually reinforcing and this created a broad, stable and sound Islamic financial system. Awang Adek said the entry of reputable Islamic financial institutions, which had helped to accelerate the liberalisation of the country's Islamic financial system, had also brought with them wider perspective in their operations and product offerings to the domestic market, as well as useful international links.On another note, he urged potential investors to look at Malaysia in the context of Association of South-East Asian Nations (Asean) market and leverage on the country's strategic position as well as linkages and networks that had already been established in the region."At present, Malaysia accounts for 26 percent of the total intra-Asean trade. As Asean strives to accelerate the deepening of regional economic integration, with the ultimate objective of establishing the Asean Economic Community, Malaysia's role in this marketplace is bound to become even more significant," he said.On bilateral trade, he said, the China-Malaysia trade, which has grown steadily since 2002, would enjoy double-digit growth in 2007 driven by trade liberalisation stemming from the China-Asean free trade agreement. He said the present business environment would offer an opportunity for India and Malaysia to further strengthen their business cooperation.Vietnam and Malaysia, on the converse, would bolster their cooperation in power development, oil exploration and exploitation, and seafood processing, among others, he said.Meanwhile, Awang Adek said the Budget 2008 would be good for all parties in the country -- the investors, consumers, the people.He, however, declined to say whether there would be more tax cuts or if it would be an `election budget'.--

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Alfalah Consulting - Kuala Lumpur: www.alfalahconsulting.com
Consultant/Speaker/Motivator : www.ahmad-sanusi-husain.com 
Islamic Investment Malaysia: www.islamic-invest-malaysia.com

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