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Islamic funds industry 'ready to bounce back'

MANAMA: As the curtain came down on the 6th Annual World Islamic Funds and Capital Markets Conference (WIFCMC) yesterday, organiser MEGA Events managing director Davis McLean predicted that next year would see the industry bounce back after a year of stabilisation.

"This year we have seen the Islamic funds industry re-invent itself and by 2011 we expect growth to be back on track," he said.

"That is certainly the view that came across here from experts from all over the world.

"The industry has not gone backwards but has been flat as it reorganised in the wake of the financial crisis and can now move forward strongly.

"We did not see the conference grow this year as it has in the past but we have kept pace and next year this event will be moving ahead again," he said.

"The strength of the WIFCMC brand was again evident this year as a record number of market leading institutions came on board in support of the event.

"Last year's conference wrapped up with a clear signal that even in challenging times for the global financial markets that Islamic funds and investment markets were solid and that has proved to be the case.

"The focus on the Islamic financial industry will now move to Singapore next month where we are launching the first World Islamic Banking Asia Summit Forum," he added.

"Our Islamic finance forums will celebrate 17 years when the World Islamic Banking Conference returns to Bahrain later this year and it has been complemented over the years by our London event, the funds event and now our initial Asia event."

Central Bank of Bahrain Governor Rasheed Al Maraj will be one of three keynote speakers at this forum which runs from June 14 to 15 in Singapore.

Other key speakers at the opening session are UAE central bank governor, Sultan bin Nasser Al Suwaidi and Monetary Authority of Singapore deputy chairman Lim Hng Kiang.



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