Jeddah, March 31, 2013 – The International Shariah Research Academy for Islamic finance (ISRA), in collaboration with the Islamic Research and Training Institute (IRTI) and Durham University, jointly organised a one-and-a-half-day strategic roundtable discussion from 31st March to 1st April, 2013, at the Islamic Development Bank Group Headquarters in Jeddah.
This third roundtable represents a continuation of the discussions of previous years. In 2011 the roundtable debated – among other subjects – the need to balance equity and debt and the need to improve the existing model of Islamic banking and finance at institutional, organizational and transactional levels. In response to the declaration made thereafter, the 2012 roundtable focused on the essence of risk sharing in Islamic finance. Most of the delegates agreed that the recent global financial crisis which started in 2007 proved that the most salient feature of the conventional interest-based debt financing system is the transfer of risk away from financial institutions onto governments, customers and the public at large. Hence, the 2013 strategic roundtable aimed to discuss the theoretical and practical aspects of risk sharing under the following theme: “Risk Sharing in Theory and Practice: Fiqh Evidence vis-à-vis Current Reality”.
41 participants, comprising three significant sets of stakeholders of Islamic finance industry, namely reputable Shari’ah scholars, renowned Muslim economists and practitioners, attended the event. Among the notable Shari’ah scholars and economists who participated in the roundtable were Sheikh Abdul-Rahman Al-Atram, Sheikh Abdul Sattar Abu Ghuddah, Dr Daud Bakar, Prof Muhammad Anas Zarqa, Prof Mohamed Ali Elgari, Prof Umar Chapra, Dr Sami al-Suwailem, and many others.
The event commenced with a brief welcoming address from Prof. Dato’ Dr. Azmi Omar, Director General of IRTI, followed by brief remarks from Assoc. Prof. Dr Mohammad Akram Laldin, the Executive Director of ISRA, and Prof. Dr. Habib Ahmed, representing Durham University.
There were four sessions held to discuss different topics related to both fiqh perspectives on risk sharing and its current applications in Islamic finance. The summary of the sessions, topics and ice breakers are as follows:
Day 1 (31st March 2013): Moderated by Prof. Dr. Ashraf Md. Hashim
Session 1: Risk Sharing in Islamic Law: A Conceptual Framework
Presentation: Dr. Marjan Muhammad (Researcher, ISRA)
- Sheikh Dr Muhamad Syafee Antonio (ISRA Council of Scholars)
- Sheikh Anas Zarqa (ISRA Council of Scholars)
- Dr Sami Ibrahim Al-Suwailem (Islamic Finance Products Development Center, IDB)
Session 2: Commercial Viability of Musharakah Instruments: Viewpoints of Industry Practitioners
- Mr Kamarul Ariffin Mohd Jamil (CEO, AFFIN Islamic Bank)
- Salem Ghandour (Vice President, International Business Strategy, Maybank Islamic Malaysia)
Session 3: Viability of Musharakah Instruments: A Regulatory Perspective
- Dr. Muhammad Syahmi Mohd Karim (Risk Analyst, Bank Negara Malaysia)
- Dr Hylmun Izhar (IRTI)
- Dr Ken Baldwin (Head of Financial Policy & Planning, IDB)
Day 2 (1st April 2013): Moderated by Dr Salman Syed Ali (IRTI)
Session 4: Promoting Musharakah Instruments in Contemporary Islamic Finance: A Way Forward
Icebreakers (10 minutes each):
- Sheikh Mohamed Ali Elgari (ISRA Council of Scholars)
- Dr. Daud Bakar (ISRA Council of Scholars)
- Mr Ferdaus Abdullah Toh (Head of Consumer Banking & Strategic Services, AFFIN Islamic Bank)
- Dr Abdelrahman Al-Zahi (IRTI)
During the concluding session, the participants agreed on a declaration named the “Jeddah Roundtable Declaration”.