Product Development in Islamic Banks

By Habib Ahmed | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 8
CONCLUSION

From a bare handful of financial institutions set up in the 1970s to provide services compatible with Shari'ah, the Islamic financial sector has witnessed extraordinary growth and has now become a significant global phenomenon. While the growth of the industry in a short span of time is commendable, concerns about its uniqueness and the direction it has taken are being raised. The inclination of the industry to use Islamic versions of conventional banking products has been accentuated by market-driven and competitive forces whereby economic factors overshadow the Shari'ah principles. The use of pseudo-Islamic products and those replicating conventional products by the Islamic financial industry raises serious questions about the essence and future of Islamic finance.

Siddiqi (2004) asserts that the ingenuity of the Islamic financial sector would be to integrate the vision of a moral society and socially responsible finance into functioning institutions. ElGari (2004) concurs that were the Islamic civilisation thriving, it would be capable of creating a vibrant society with institutions and organisations manifesting the core values of Islam. In this system, organisations including banks would be based on Islamic roots and reflect the features of justice, equity and social welfare. This book suggests that realisation of Shari'ah-based Islamic

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