INCEIF Chancellor Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz launches books on Islamic Finance

Kuala Lumpur, 23 February 2013: INCEIF Chancellor Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz today launched a total of six books and a monograph that addresses a wide range of topics on Islamic Finance with contributing authors from among INCEIF faculty members, PhD students and alumni.

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Four of the publications were published with sponsorships from the industry. Cagamas Bhd has sponsored the book, `Islamic Finance in Malaysia, Growth & Development’ which was edited by INCEIF’s Prof of Economics and Governance, Emeritus Prof Datuk Dr Mohamed Ariff Abdul Kareem. 

The book brings readers on a journey within the realms of the economic discipline in Malaysia and its evolutionary stages towards what is now known as Islamic Finance. It seeks to shed light on the concerns of the community, ranging from microfinancing for the poor to wealth management for the rich within the paradigm of Shariah.

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Sultan Perak Sultan Nazrin Muizzudin Shah wrote in the book’s foreword that a great history did not just capture the glory part of a particular era: it could also capture the pains and challenges. Today’s world and the financial markets, which are experiencing a “moral bankruptcy” where the “invisible heart” is corrupting the “invisible hand”, can learn much from Islamic finance.

“From humanitarian and green financing to creating positive social-economic impacts, Islamic Finance can and ought to offer a model that promotes the public good, mutuality, value creation and inclusiveness,” Sultan Nazrin wrote.

Khazanah Nasional Bhd is the sponsor of the monograph `Human Priorities: The Urgency of an Ethical Economics’ which was based on a talk on the same topic delivered by Cambridge’s Master of Magdalene College Dr Rowan Williams. The book also included the subsequent discussions by panelists Dr Rowan and First Holder of INCEIF Chair of Islamic Finance Prof Dr Abbas Mirakhor.

In the foreword, Khazanah Managing Director Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar wrote that the significant detachment of the financial economy from the real economy has resulted in unstrained stampede of “money making money” without any basis in reality. This distortion of reality has been greatly exacerbated by a weakness or absence of ethics in the realm of financial interactions. The discussions following the talk had put forward the case for the integration or rather restoration of ethics into the financial eco-system. 

Khazanah has also sponsored the book, ‘Financing The Development of Old Waqf Properties’. With poverty still a major issue across the world, the book is a timely call to action for those who are in search of alternative means of strengthening social solidarity, a more just wealth distribution and poverty reduction. It presents successful case studies in Muslim and Muslim minority countries that have revolutionised the redevelopment of idle waqf properties into productive land trusts. 

The Malaysian Financial Planning Council has sponsored the book, ‘Readings in Personal Financial Planning, Shariah Wealth Management and Case Studies’. The book was edited by INCEIF Assoc Prof Dr Ahcene Lahsasna. It has been designed in such a way to aid layman interested to know more about Shariah financial planning. It also serves as a guide to prospective Shariah financial planners to understand the Islamic consciousness of their prospective clients. 

Prof Mohamed Ariff is also the author of the book, ‘Islam for All: An Intellective Discourse’. The book articulates in a readable fashion the elements that one needs to properly understand the religion, an eye-opener for Muslims and people of other faiths. It takes a holistic approach where belief, spirituality, law, scientific discoveries and economic development are presented as diverse dimensions of Islam.

Another book launched today was ‘Public Finance and Islamic Capital Markets’ which was authored by Prof Dr Abbas Mirakhor, INCEIF Prof of Finance Prof Dr Obiyathulla Ismail Bacha and INCEIF Alumni Dr Syed Aun R. Rizvi of Lahore University of Management Sciences. This book addresses the financing of government budgets with non-debt-creating flows through risk-sharing capital market instruments. It offers a comparative analysis with conventional finance to demonstrate the ability of Islamic capital market instruments to create an impetus for economic stability and growth.   

Prof Dr Obiyathulla is also the author of the last book, ‘Financial Derivatives, Markets and Applications in Malaysia’. This is the fourth edition of the book which is the result of substantial revision to the previous editions. Much of the changes and inclusions were based on feedback from instructors using the book as text for their derivatives courses.

All the books are available at leading bookstores in the country.

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