MILAN, 11 December 2013: Hatem Abou Said, representative of ABG Al-Baraka Banking, asked Wednesday that Islamic banking be authorized in Italy.
The request was made at an Istud conference and was addressed both to legislators and to the Italian Banking Association (ABI). ”In early 2013,” he said, ”we asked the ABI to set up of monitoring committee alongside the economic and foreign affairs ministries and a representative of the Arab banking world that would look at Italian laws needing to be changed in order to authorize Islamic finance.”
In Italy, the banker and economist noted, ”there aren’t any Islamic banks”, underscoring that ”the presence of Islamic finance operating on the Italian market would help SMEs a great deal, as well as large enterprises.”
Islamic finance has ”ethical rules and is based on a ban on speculation,” Said said, explaining that it is for this reason that ”it did not suffer negative effects from the enduring international economic crisis”.
Islamic finance is already present in ”over 75 countries, with activities growing by an annual 20-30 percent. It has been estimated that by 2020 total assets will be 6,500 billion dollars.”
In Europe, he said, ”some of the major markets have surpassed Italy by a great deal” as concerns the presence of Islamic finance, especially northern European countries – either through the so-called ‘Islamic banking window’, bringing transactions into line with Sharia law, or through Islamic banking subsidiaries, especially in Gulf states. (ANSAmed).
*This article was published ANSAmed. Read the original article here.