Kuala Lumpur, 24 March 2020 – INCEIF University, its consulting subsidiary ISRA Consulting and Islamic University of Maldives (“IUM”) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the plan to, among others, restart the promotion of INCEIF academic and executive programmes in Maldives.
To commemorate this, INCEIF hosted a virtual MoU signing and a knowledge sharing session on the update of Islamic finance industry in Maldives by Assoc Prof Dr Aishath Muneeza. A Maldivian, Dr Aishath is acknowledged as of one of the founders of the Islamic finance industry in Maldives. She was the driving force behind the setting up of a number of institutions offering Islamic finance in the country. As a policy maker, an attorney and currently an academician, she has continued to promote for the sustainable development of Islamic finance in her country, and remains a role model for those who aspire to develop a career in Islamic finance.
Since 2014, INCEIF has been sharing its knowledge with various parties in Maldives in developing the country’s Islamic finance industry through capacity and capability building. INCEIF had worked with Maldives’ Capital Market Development Authority and in collaboration with IUM, to offer opportunities for Maldivians to pursue the Masters in Islamic Finance Practice in Male. The first batch of students, who began the programme in 2014, have graduated in 2016.
Over the years, INCEIF has honoured several best students from among a small yet growing number of Maldivians who have since successfully established their Islamic finance careers in Maldives and in other jurisdiction.
INCEIF President & CEO Prof Dato’ Dr Azmi Omar, in his remarks, said today’s MoU would hopefully set forth another generation of Islamic finance experts who would join those who were already contributing towards the growth of Islamic finance businesses in the country.
“Notwithstanding the unprecedented setback in global economy due to the pandemic, we look forward to the world getting more curious about Islamic finance and its role in healing the global ails. There is so much to learn, dissect and discover about the applications of Maqasid al-Shari’ah in today’s world – in Fintech, Green & Sustainable Financing, Financial Inclusion, Islamic Social Financing – and how they all make sense in achieving UN Sustainable Development Goals.
We are delighted to note that in Islamic University of Maldives, INCEIF has found a committed partner to play our respective role in promoting both sustainability and inclusivity in the Islamic finance sphere,” Dato’ Azmi said.
Islamic University of Maldives Vice Chancellor Dr Ibrahim Zakariyya Moosa, in his remarks, said IUM looked forward to the renewed ties with INCEIF as the university valued INCEIF’s experience in Islamic finance education, particularly for postgraduate studies.
“Maldives is building its Islamic finance capacity to become the IF hub for South Asia. IUM is confident that the MoU is timely and will pave the way to promote and extend the knowledge in IF in the country, as well as enable the exchange of educational resources between all parties,” Dr Ibrahim said.
In her session, Assoc Prof Dr Aishath said while Maldives, which is a 100 per cent Muslim nation, had made progress in IF since embracing it in 2011, several challenges remained. These included lack of awareness among industry players, which led to the need for improved soft skills; limited number of players in the market to ensure a robust industry, and the absence of incentives for the growth of IF including Shariah and legal issues.
“Once these challenges have been addressed, Maldives looks set to host a vibrant IF industry as the potentials and interest are certainly growing,” she added.