Dubai on track to be top Islamic economy: Sheikh Mohammed

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Dubai’s ambition of becoming world’s capital of Islamic economy on track, Sukuks (Islamic Bonds) listed on Dubai’s exchanges rose to AED135 billion in 2015

DUBAI Capital of Islamic Economy

Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Wednesday said the first goal of the strategy launched two years ago to develop and promote Dubai as the global capital of Islamic economy has been achieved.

Sheikh Mohammed hailed the achievement made by Dubai that has overtaken other financial centres in listing Islamic bonds on its exchanges. Sukuk, listed on Dubai’s exchanges, rose to AED135 billion ($36.75 billion) in 2015, said a recent study published by Thomson Reuters.

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Sukuk listing on Nasdaq Dubai surpassed the world’s three traditional sukuk centres: Malaysia ($26.6 billion), Irish Stock Exchange ($25.7 billion) and London Stock Exchange ($25.1 billion), according to Reuters.

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Various factors contributed to the growth of sukuk listing on Nasdaq Dubai including State-linked firms supporting Dubai’s effort, geographical location with Muslim population – which both supplies sukuk and provides investor demand, and Dubai’s drive to continuously innovative on creative ways to boost its standing as a top Islamic finance centre to boost trade with measures such as sharia-compliant repurchase agreements and selling sukuks to retail investors.

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Sheikh Mohammed made these remarks as he chaired a meeting of the board of directors of Dubai Islamic Economy Development Centre.

“When we launched our plan to become the world’s capital of Islamic economy two years ago, some brothers had doubts. But today we have achieved the first goal even before the date we had set. We have a clear vision for our next achievement in 2020.”

“Islamic finance is the most important sector of Islamic economy and sukuk are one of the most important tools of this sector. Today we are the world’s biggest centres for sukuk, but our vision is even wider and more comprehensive as it takes in seven major sectors of Islamic economy,” Sheikh Mohammed added.

“Thanks to its steady growth, increasing assets and straightforward principles, Islamic economy has become an established reality within the system of global economy. Through the huge economic opportunities provided by Islamic economy, and the massive partnerships that it can create, Islamic economy can provide a key to further stability and development in our region.”

Sheikh Mohammed added, “We want an Islamic economy that has a global vision and local cadres to serve our national economic interests because the fast-paced global economic developments make it mandatory for us to quicken the pace of diversifying our national economy.”

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