Top Islamic banking experts will discuss opportunities for Omani banks interested in taking advantage of a recent Omani royal decree authorizing the establishment of Sharia-compliant services at an upcoming conference in Muscat.
International Turnkey Solutions (ITS), a leading business and technology solutions provider, will host its first Islamic banking conference at the Shangri-la’s Barr Al Jissah Resort and Spa on June 20.
“I am very excited to join ITS in discussing Islamic banking issues with the Omani banking sector, which is facing a unique opportunity today with the opening up of an Islamic finance sector,” said Dr Mabid Al-Jarhi, president, International Association for Islamic Economics.
“This is surely a situation where early adopters will pick up the most benefits but much planning and expertise is required to assure long-term growth, profitability and credibility.”
Sultan Qaboos bin Said Al Said’s royal decree authorizing Sharia-compliant financial products comes as studies indicate that the global Islamic finance industry is set to grow 24 per cent annually, a statement said.
The industry has weathered the financial crisis, with total value of assets controlled growing from RO154 billion at the end of 2008 to more than RO0.38 trillion in 2010, it added.
“The royal decree ushers in a new era for Omani finance. Demand from the youth, who make up 65 percent of the GCC, will certainly drive this industry,” said Dr Haroun Dharsey, senior vice president, Operational Projects, Dubai Islamic Bank, and speaker at the ITS Islamic Banking Conference.
“We are proud to extend our support to ITS who will leverage their years of experience to benefit Oman’s burgeoning Islamic finance industry,” he added.
Industry experts and speakers from regional Islamic institutions will discuss the challenges involved in migrating to a Sharia-compliant structure including overhauling the IT infrastructure, training staff and integrating with the global banking system, said Tarek Khalifa, SGR area manager of ITS.
“At ITS, we are taking the initiative and sharing our 30 years of industry experience with what is sure to become a key market,” said Khalid Al-Saeid, MD and general manager of ITS.
“The expertise we have accumulated through our operations in Saudi Arabia and various Islamic knowledge centers allow us to design turnkey solutions that will help our clients migrate to Sharia compliancy quickly and seamlessly,” he concluded.
The seminar will target key decision-makers in the banking industry such as top management officials and C-level executives.