In 2021, global Islamic financial assets reached an all-time high of more than $4 trillion marks as expected by the industry pundits earlier. With the completion of the phase of creating a niche for itself, Islamic finance is now set to reach new horizons. A lot of work has been done in giving the Islamic banking & finance industry an international standard.
However, the figure is still around 1% of global financial assets. It demonstrates that we are still a long way to go before we are taken seriously as a viable alternative to the conventional financial system.
We need to speak out to the remaining 99% of the conventional finance industry players about the merits and strengths of the Islamic financial system.
I have listed up top five ways to enhance the understanding of Islamic finance and the clear benefits it provides to the industry players and other stakeholders.
Standardize the Education/Certification System of Islamic Banking & Finance
I have seen so many people/organizations lecturing and providing training to interested people in the finance industry without even knowing the basics of Islamic finance. This is hurting the industry badly as they are not able to fully persuade their clients to consider the discipline of Islamic finance seriously. We need to set up certain standards and qualifications for the trainers to make sure that only the right type of information is passed on to the interested clients.
Conduct Seminars/Conferences To Reach Out to the Not-Yet-Convinced Players/Stakeholders
Major Islamic finance industry players and other stakeholders need to conduct regular seminars, and conferences in major financial centers of Europe, Asia, Africa, and North America. Although Japan is the third-largest financial center in the world, no serious effort has yet been made to organize any major conference on Islamic finance in Tokyo. Indeed, a lot needs to be done to improve the situation and create awareness about the Islamic finance industry in the country. Hong Kong is another such example where most of the financial industry players only have a rudimentary understanding of Islamic financial products and services.
Islamic Finance Industry Needs To Have More Spokespersons Than Now
We need to have more enthusiastic promoters and evangelists in the Islamic finance industry who can go out to herald the dawn of a newly-discovered economic system that provides a serious alternative to the conventional financial system and prove its resilience in the wake of micro and macro-financial shocks.
Conduct Extensive Research on Unresolved Issues in Islamic Finance Head On
Some research organizations such as ISRA from Malaysia and academics such as Abbas Mirakhor, Umer Chapra, Late Dr. Ziauddin Ahmad, Dr. Fahim Khan, and others have done the groundwork in the area of Islamic financing. Credit creation and control and deposit mobilization sides have been taken for granted so far. The available literature on these subjects and many other related topics are scanty, controversial, and inconclusive.
A new generation of Islamic economists has to rise to the challenge and provide authentic solutions to the unresolved issues in the field of Islamic Finance.
Spread The Word By Using All Channels Possible
Although, there are some publications, magazines, newspapers, and other outlets such as ours which are making efforts to spread the word out to the general public, as well as professionals and other stakeholders in the conventional finance industry, the quality of these mediums, is not yet up to par.
So, wait no more, tell us what your views are on the above and how you would like to spread the word to make the discipline of Islamic finance more acceptable among the general public and professionals in the industry.