DUBAI – Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services (S&P) announced the appointment of Dr. Mohamed Damak as Global Head of Islamic Finance, to lead S&P’s global Islamic Finance team that has been in place since 2007 and strengthen its Islamic Finance offering.
As part of his new role, Damak will be responsible for developing the next phase of growth of S&P’s Islamic Finance ratings and research worldwide. He will assume his new role in conjunction with his current responsibilities within S&P’s Financial Services CEEMEA team.
Speaking of S&P’s long-term expertise in Islamic Finance, Stuart Anderson, Managing Director & Regional Head, Middle East at S&P, said: “For more than a decade, S&P has successfully served the Islamic Finance industry with its independent and objective credit opinions. Our in-house, global team of dedicated analysts is involved in formulating coherent, transparent rating methodologies, and timely opinions about trends shaping the future of the Islamic finance industry.
Reinforcing S&P’s deep understanding of and commitment to the Islamic Finance industry, the rating agency was recently named “Best Islamic Rating Agency” in the 2014 Islamic Finance News Awards Service Providers Poll.
“This is the seventh award win for our global Islamic Finance team since 2007 and the fourth time we have won this individual award. Damak’s new role is a crucial step towards further strengthening our Islamic Finance business globally. He will play an important role in growing our ratings coverage of sukuk across the globe, while expanding our ratings universe of Islamic Financial Institutions, continued Anderson.
Islamic Finance continues to grow rapidly and break into the mainstream of the world economy by expanding outside of its core markets of the Gulf Cooperation Council and Malaysia. Increasingly, sukuk are attracting interest not only from traditional issuers, but also from non-traditional issuers in countries such as North Africa, sub-Saharan Africa, Europe and countries such as Russia, who seek to diversify their investor base.
“Globally, the Islamic Finance industry grew by around 17% per annum over the past five years and we now estimate the total size of the industry to be around $1.8 trillion. Looking ahead, we believe these assets are likely to sustain double-digit growth in the coming five years and reach around $3 trillion,” said Damak.
“In particular, global sukuk issuance reached $88.4 billion year-to-date, up by 17.2% compared with the same period last year and we believe issuance will exceed $100 billion again this year for the third year in a row. Among others, the UK, South Africa and Luxembourg have tapped, or are willing to tap, the market this year, further evidence that the market is increasingly attracting interest from traditional and non-traditional issuers. This positive development for the globalization of the Islamic Finance market is a trend we expect to continue in the coming years,” he added.
Originally published on www.zawya.com