Islamic Banking, Finance and Insurance
A Global Overview
By: Salahuddin Ahmed
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The area of learning on Islamic banking, finance and insurance is just over thirty years old. The author believes that gradual innovation in Islamic banking and its related fields will have tremendous effect on the established Western-oriented banking and finance theories and their practical operations. Banking without interest may sound illusory to some minds, yet the foundation of Islamic banking rests on the principles of lending money without interest based upon the Qur’an. The full-blown capitalist system is making the rich countries richer and the countries already burdened with avalanche of debts, going further and further down in the morass of poverty. The world will certainly be a better place if there is no interest to pay by a borrower, who borrows money for a worthy cause and enters into a venture with the provider of capital, which aims for sharing legitimate profits through productive efforts and generating collective welfare for the society.
The book discusses the foundation principles of Islamic banking, finance and Islamic insurance (Takaful) and provides a global overview of the current position and the activities of the Islamic banks, Islamic financial institutions and the Islamic insurance companies. The book has thirteen chapters. The first two chapters deal with the basis and modes of Islamic finance. Chapters 3, 4, 5 and 6 deal with Islamic banking and financial services provided by the Islamic banks and financial institutions in the countries around the world. Chapter 7 deals with Islamic bonds (sukuks), which did not exist until very recent time. Chapter 8 deals with Islamic investment, which includes Islamic funds, providers for Islamic financial services and Islamic indexing. Chapter 9 deals with Islamic mortgage or home finance, those are currently available in many countries including the United Kingdom and the United States. Chapter 10 deals with the international aspect of Islamic banking and finance, which include organisations like the Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB). Chapter 11 deals with Islamic project finance for some major projects currently being carried out around the world. Chapter 12 deals with the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) and its operations in various fields in many countries of the world. Chapter 13 deals with the basis and actual operation of Islamic insurance (Takaful) in some countries.