Nigeria should strive to get its slice of the $3trillion global revenue of the Islamic finance market, the Director International Institute of Islamic Banking and Finance (IIIBF), Prof Binta Tijjani Jibril, has said.
Prof Binta who spoke with Daily Trust in Abuja said given the multifarious financial problems Nigeria is facing at the moment, looking towards Islamic finance has become imperative.
“In particular, the need for an alternative mode of finance has become necessary in view of dwindling resources at the federal and state governments; and our ever increasing developmental needs’’, she said.
The director of the Bayero University Kano-based IIIBF also noted that Islamic Finance had proved in many jurisdictions globally to be a potential alternative to interest-based global economy system.
According to her, Islamic Finance (IF) provides cheaper and ethical source of finance to governments and individuals.
Not only that, she added that it could provide greater financial inclusion, especially of large undeserved Muslim population and other people that yearn for ethical finance.
She said, ‘’ Its emphasis on asset-backed financing and profit and loss sharing feature means that it could provide support for SMEs, as well as investment in public infrastructure.
‘’ Its risk-sharing features, prohibition of interest and speculation ensures that IF poses less systemic risk than conventional finance
“ It has a natural connection with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in the sense that both IF and the SDGs want to achieve more responsible, equitable, and economy-oriented financing.’’
She said the World Bank had thrown its weight behind IF as global financial institution said IF had emerged as an effective tool for financial development worldwide, including non-Muslim countries.
She also quoted the World Bank as saying, ‘’ Major financial markets are discovering solid evidence that Islamic finance has already been mainstreamed within the global financial system – and that it has the potential to help address the challenges of ending extreme poverty and boosting shared prosperity.’’
She said these were part of the reasons why even countries like the United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, China, South Africa, Kenya and so on were struggling to make their jurisdictions hubs of IF.
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