(Wednesday, 31st March, 2010)
The Address Dubai Mall hotel, Dubai, UAE
In the presence of His Highness Shaikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation Department and Chairman of the Emirates Group, and HE Juma Al Majed, Chairman of Dubai Economic Council (DEC), the Secretariat-General of the Dubai Economic Council organized a workshop titled “Sukuk: Nature and Applications” on 31st March, 2010 at Dubai.
A number of representatives from economic decision-making circles in federal and local levels, and of local business community attended the event. Additionally, representatives Islamic financing institutions such as Dubai Islamic Bank, Dubai Financial Market, Abu Dhabi Securities Market, Emirates Islamic Bank, in addition to the UAE Central Bank have also participated in this workshop. Four key speakers who are working as experts in Islamic financial institutions in the UAE have participated in this event.
- Sukuk: Characteristics, Issuance, Uses, and the Main Related Issues
- Sukuk Markets and Means of Improvement Including Structural and Supervisory Aspects
- The Challenges Facing Islamic Banking Industry, and Those Related to Sovereign and Semi-sovereign Sukuk
- Sukuk: Legal Considerations and Implications- UAE and International Practices
Highlights on SG’s Opening speech
HE Hani Al Hamli, Secretary-General of the Dubai Economic Council stated that the UAE Economy generally and Dubai specifically have witnessed continuous developments over the last years. The strategic vision of the UAE’s wise leadership of HH Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, and HH Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and UAE Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, have contributed to enhancing the economic development march of the UAE and positioning itself in the global economy. Al Hamli also stated that sound economic policies have played an important role in achieving economic stability and increasing the GDP growth rate. In this context, the services sector has a vital role in enhancing the economic growth rate of the UAE in the way that keep pace with the latest global economic developments, and to utilize the opportunities of globalization and regional integration incurred in these areas.
Al Hamli pointed out that sukuks were issued for the first time in Malaysia in 2002 amounted to $2b, after which issuance of sukuk witnessed remarkable growth. In 2007, the value of sukuk exceeded $94b. Based on this, it was expected that this growth would continue in the coming years, however, the subprime crisis that emerged in 2007, followed by the global financial crisis in 2008 resulting in global economic slowdown in 2009 have changed the expected trend.
Al Hamli added that in 2007, the UAE ranked first in sukuk issuance with $33b, whilst Malaysia came second with $31b. The UAE retained this leading position in 2008, however, the size of sukuks issued in 2008 had declined. According to the available data, Malaysia ranked first with a market share of (75%), followed by the GCC member states (14%) with (6%) share for each the UAE and Saudi Arabia.
Al Hamli pointed out that sukuk has raised many issues concerning their uses, in addition to challenges facing them in the financial markets. He also asserted that such issues have prompted the DEC to consult a number of experts in Islamic financing industry to organize this workshop in order to highlight main issues regarding the nature of sukuk; their uses, markets, and the key challenges facing the sukuk.
Highlights on papers delivered
Four key papers have been presented in the workshop.
The first paper titled “Sukuk: Characteristics, Issuance, Uses, and the Main Related Issues” will be delivered by Dr Hussein Hamed Hassan, Chairman of Shari’a Board, Emirates Islamic Bank-Dubai. The session was moderated by professor Abdulrazak Alfaris, Chief Economist of Dubai Economic Council.
The second joint paper titled “Sukuk Markets and Approaches of Their Improvements Including Structural, Supervisory and Their Applicability to the State’s Development Strategy” has delivered by Dr Mabid Al Jarhi, Secretary-general, Fatwa & Shari’a Supervisory Board, Dubai Financial Market-Dubai, and Dr Abdul Azeem Abu Zayed, Advisor, Emirates Islamic Bank-Dubai. The session moderated by Professor Dr Jassim Ali Al-Shamsi, Dean of the College of Law, UAE University.
The third paper titled “The Challenges facing the Islamic Banking Industry, and Those Related to Sovereign and Non-sovereign Sukuk” has delivered by Dr Abdulsatar Al Khuwaildi, Secretary-general, International Islamic Center for Reconciliation and Arbitration-Dubai.
While the forth joint-paper titled “Sukuk: Legal Considerations and Implications- UAE and International Practice” has been presented by Mr. Aymen A. Khaleq, Partner-Vinson and Elkins LLP-Dubai, and Mr. Sami Al-Louzi, Partner-Vinson and Elkins LLP-Abu Dhabi. The session moderated by Dr Ebrahim A. Alshali Al-Teneiji, Chairman of the Islamic Studies Department, College of Law, UAE University.