DAVAO CITY — The National Commission on Muslim Filipinos is pushing for the approval of Enrolled Bill 8281 by President Mr. Rodrigo R. Duterte, for regulating and organizing the Islamic banking system in the country.
Dimapuno Datu Ramos Jr., director of the NCMF’s Bureau of External Relations, said NCMF Secretary Saidamen Pangarungan had recently met with officials of the Bangko Sentral and the Asian Development Bank to push for the bill’s approval. Last month, the Senate passed the bill, which originated from the House of Representatives, with 20 affirmative votes.
Under the measure, the legal and regulatory framework of Islamic banks would be supervised by the BSP and the Monetary Board. The BSP will also issue the rules and regulations to govern the growing Islamic banking sector in the country.
“This bill seeks to put in place and establish a sound legal and regulatory framework for the development of Islamic Banks in the country. It aims to invite foreign Islamic Banks to operate in the Philippines and increase the business and investment opportunities for Muslim Filipinos. It will also encourage existing commercial banks in the Philippines to provide windows for the operation of Islamic banking in their respective financial institutions,” Datu Ramos said, quoting Pangarungan.
He said the NCMF sees the approval of the bill as a chance for employment by more than 800 Shariah lawyers in the country. They could be tapped to assist banks in providing Islamic banking services to their customers.
“Secretary Pangarungan pushed for the immediate approval of this bill, as this will provide the much-needed boost and stability in the Muslim Filipino`s economic structure, as well as create jobs for Shariah lawyers,” Datu Ramos said.
He said the NCMF also sees the measure as an encouragement to Muslim Filipinos “to broaden their options in terms of banking and investment in the country.”