9th International Shari’ah Scholars Forum (ISSF 2014)
Kuala Lumpur, November 10-11 – The International Shariah Research Academy for Islamic Finance organized its ninth annual International Shariah Scholars Forum (ISSF 2014) in collaboration with the Islamic Research and Training Institute (IRTI) of the Islamic Development Bank in Jeddah. The forum was held at the InterContinental Hotel, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
In the ninth ISSF, the theme was “Contemporary Issues in Islamic Finance: Beneficial and Legal Ownership and Takaful in Light of Islamic Concept of Cooperation”. The forum was attended by numerous world renowned Shariah scholars, senior industry practitioners and academicians sharing their views and experiences regarding the theme. Among the eminent scholars and industry experts who participated in the forum were:
- Sheikh Prof Dr Ali Muhyiddin Ali al-Qaradaghi
- Sheikh Dr Abdul Rahman Saleh al-Atram
- Sheikh Prof Dr Mohammad Ali Elgari
- Sheikh Prof Dr Mohammad Abdul Razzaq al-Tabtabae
- Datuk Sheikh Dr. Mohd. Daud Bakar
- Sheikh Prof Dr Khidir Ali Idrees
- Sheikh Ibrahim Ahmed Sheikh al-Darir
- Mr Rafe Haneef
- Prof Dr Saleh Salah
- Prof Dr Mohamad Akram Laldin
- Prof Dr Ashraf Hashim
- Prof Dr Engku Rabiah al-Adawiyah Engku Ali
- Sheikh Dr al-Ayyashi Faddad
- Dr Sami Ibrahim Suwailim
- Dr Esam K.A. El-Enzi
- Dr Said Bouheraoua
- Dr Abdul Razzaq Abdul Majeed Alaro
- Dr Khawlah Fareez al-Nawbani
- Dr Azman Mohamad Noor
- Dr. Abu Umar Faruq Ahmed
- Dr Younes Soualhi
- Dr Ahcene Lahsasna
- Sheikh Abdul Qadeer Amor
- Ust. Burhanuddin Loqman
- Ust. Muhammad Ali Jinnah Ahmad
The two-day forum commenced with a recitation of some verses from the Quran followed by welcoming remarks by the Executive Director of ISRA, Prof Dr Mohamad Akram Laldin and two keynote presentations in the first day. The first keynote speech on the first day was delivered by Sheikh Prof. Dr. Ali Muhyiddin Ali al-Qaradaghi, who highlighted the similarity and dissimilarity between the concept of legal and beneficial ownership in both Shariah and the common law. The second keynote speech was delivered by Mr Rafe Haneef in which he traced the origin of beneficial ownership in Common Law and emphasised in his opinion that Shariah is strongly supportive of beneficial ownership.
The first day of the event comprised two academic sessions. The first session discussed the legal and beneficial ownership from Shariah and Legal Perspective. The second session assessed Application of Beneficial and Legal Ownership in Islamic Finance
The second day of the forum started with the third keynote speech, delivered by Sheikh Dr Abdul Rahman Saleh Al-Atram on musyarakah taʾawuniyyah: fundamentals and challenges. This was followed by three forum sessions.
The first session examined musyarakah taʾawuniyyah with special reference to the fundamentals and general principles of the concept in the Takaful industry
The second session discussed Application of musharakah taʿawuniyyah in Takaful Industry focusing more on contractual relationship and operational issues
The third session critically discussed issues pertinent to the legal and beneficial ownership, and application of the concept of musharakah ta‘awuniyyah in takaful industry. It also summarized the lessons learned from common law perspective on beneficial ownership and cooperative insurances and offered the need for innovation in Islamic finance products from International Fiqh Academies and Research Academies for Islamic finance.
At the end of programme, Sheikh Dr al-Ayyashi Faddad, a representative of IRTI spelled out the resolutions and recommendations of this year’s forum, which can be summarized as follows:
- The need to conduct research on the effects of beneficial ownership and suggest relevant Shariah parameters to address those effects.
- The need to create a legal framework that will give due recognition to this type of ownership, i.e. beneficial ownership, to avoid major risk for the Islamic finance industry.
- The need for research institutions and experts to conduct more in-depth research on the OIC-IFA Resolution on the Islamic concept of cooperation (ta‘awun).
- The need to address the challenges and issues raised in the forum regarding Shariah and conceptual framework of the OIC-IFA Resolution, which include the following: legal personality of musharakah ta‘awuniyyah and its legal framework, settlement of claim, legal characterization of the concept of musharakah ta‘awuniyyah, contribution and its characterization, contractual relationship among the contributors, surplus and others issues discussed.
- To initiate research projects that would shed more light on the theoretical and practical concepts of cooperative insurance as presented at the forum.
This is followed by closing remark by Prof Dr Mohamad Akram Laldin, the executive director of ISRA with heartfelt gratitude and sincere appreciation to those who contributed to the success of the forum.