The Sharia Departments Forum hosted its 3rd annual event in the UAE at the Palace Downtown on 21st April, 2018. The event serves as a platform for Sharia departments of Islamic financial institutions to conceptualize, evolve and drive the development of Sharia compliance in the UAE.
Following the successful momentum driven by forum’s previous events, the 2018 forum included all Sharia departments of Islamic Financial institutions in the UAE, with discussions centered around the theme of “Profit Distribution and Expenses Allocation” primarily built around covering the process and mechanism of distributing the profits and allocating the expenses – as applied in selected banks in the UAE. Additional topics included the development of Sharia standards for the distribution of profits and allocation of expenses.
Moosa Khoory, Chairman Organizing Committee of Sharia Departments Forum and Head of Sharia at Dubai Islamic Bank said, “Reflecting on the progress of the Islamic finance industry over the last 40 years, we strongly believe that all players within the industry can extract massive synergies if we are aligned on communication, reporting and regulations. This ‘meeting of minds’ from across the sector is critical for the continued development and globalization of Islamic Finance. This event helps facilitate the sharing of best practices whilst simultaneously addressing the challenges faced by Sharia business teams today. As the main founder of this Forum, and based on directions from the Higher Sharia Board and Dubai Islamic Economy Development Center, we remain fully committed to the UAE’s ambition of making Dubai the global capital of the Islamic economy”.
Outcomes from the first and second events of the Forum have already made their mark including recommendations from the first event such as the establishment of a joint committee across all Sharia departments, instilling a risk based Sharia Audit, developing Sharia guidebooks for auditors as well as highlighting the need for a Higher Sharia Board at Central Bank to develop Sharia governance manuals. During the second forum, recommendations included adopting a Sharia review mechanism for both standard and non-standard business transactions (Sukuk and Syndicated Finance).