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14 Jan 2010

Eversheds comment: A fresh approach to banking and Islamic Finance in the Middle East


Amjad Hussain, head of Banking and Islamic Finance for the Middle East at international law firm Eversheds outlines the key issues facing the Islamic banking industry in 2010.

"2009 was in many ways a very difficult year for the banking and Islamic finance industry in the Gulf region: we saw the full effects of the credit crunch move eastwards to overshadow the Gulf economies; the confidence of Gulf investors was severely dented by their own exposures in Western economies and we witnessed a number of regional high profile entities face difficulties.

“There are number of challenges facing the Islamic finance industry in the coming year. One of the most important of which is how Shariah scholars and judges will interpret corporate and individual insolvency. Shariah has clear protection for individuals who get into trouble with debt but it's not clear if this extends to corporates. Some of the higher issues of Shariah have also made it difficult for practitioners to form a clear and categorical view about products and their appropriateness."

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Eversheds LLP and its world wide offices have over 4,000 people who provide services to the private and public sector business and finance community. Access to all these services is provided through 57 international offices in 31 jurisdictions. Eversheds combines local market knowledge and access with the specialisms, resources and international capability of one of the world's largest law firms.

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