Muslims killing Muslims is destructive for Islamic finance, not individual political crises, an academician said yesterday during a meeting where prominent Turkish and global figures had gathered to discuss the pace of Islamic finance.
“I don’t think [the Middle Eastern crisis] will have too much of an impact on Islamic finance. Rather, it could be seen as an aspect for reconstruction. What I find more destructive is Muslims killing Muslims,” President of the Global University for Islamic Finance (INCEIF) Daud Vicary Abdullah told Anadolu Agency yesterday at the International Forum on Financial Systems in Istanbul.
Abdullah said that in order to promote Islamic finance in the world, there was first a need to get value propositions across and to change perceptions about Islam and Islamic finance.
He cited Islamaphobia as the biggest obstacle in the fact of the expansion of Islamic finance.
“Unfortunately, many people in the West see all of us as terrorists. But we can change this through education,” he said.
“We are now engaged in Islamic finance education. People who know their subject well should stand and argue against it when they hear something incorrect about the Muslim world,” Abdullah added.
Islamic finance also stands out in the West as a low-risk investment tool, as the global economic crisis was seen as partly a result of malfunctions by high-risk financial institutions, Abdullah stated.
In the event, most participants highlighted the “safe-haven” aspect of Islamic finance, which is based on Islam compliant non-interest transactions.
President Abdullah Gül, the top guest of the forum, said that while the international financial system was being restructured, alternatives that support risk sharing should be promoted.
Gül warned of the “great burden that the financial actors put on the whole system by transferring the risks to others, rather than taking responsibility.
Therefore he called for the creation of new institutions and instruments for resolution, and identified Islamic finance as a positive supplement the current system, rather than a replacement or cure for it.
The president also praised Turkey’s development in the sector over three decades, saying it had added “dynamism” to the economy.