Nairobi will host the first East African Islamic finance summit in December.
The summit whose theme is “Unveiling opportunities” is meant to bring together individuals and firms in the region’s financial sector with their Middle East counterparts.
The Treasury has floated the idea of using Islamic finance products to fund the country’s mega projects.
Regulatory framework, regional infrastructure projects, opportunities for financing and Sukuk issuance are also expected to be key topics of discussion at the event.
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Islamic finance has been growing steadily since laws allowing for Sharia-based products were introduced five years ago.
“In Kenya in particular, Islamic finance has been picking up with banks launching compliant banking products and fully fledged Islamic banks opening,” said a report by Standard Investment Bank (SIB).
SIB noted that in 2010, the Central Bank of Kenya Act was amended to allow the monetary authority – as the government’s fiscal agent – to recognise the payment of a return rather than interest on government securities, thereby opening up the spectrum of Sharia-compliant investments.