Islamic finance conference in Hong Kong to increase awareness of sukuk

Nurdianah Md Nur

With the aim of increasing awareness and interest in using sukuk as a viable financing and investment instrument in Hong Kong, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and Bank Negara Malaysia jointly organised an Islamic finance conference in Hong Kong on Monday (14 April 2014).

Sukuk is an Islamic financial certificate, similar to a bond in Western finance, that complies with the Islamic religious law. According to a joint media statement, the half day conference saw around 200 regulators and market leaders in the Islamic finance field from Hong Kong and Malaysia discussing a wide range of issues related to sukuk. The topics discussed include the latest trends in the global sukuk market, the business opportunity for Islamic finance in Hong Kong, the practical issues in structuring sukuk, and its investment appetite.

"With the tax framework for sukuk in place, Hong Kong's financial platform is ready for sukuk issuance," said Peter Pang, deputy chief executive of HKMA." We highly welcome local and overseas entities to make use of Hong Kong's platform to issue sukuk."

Pang added that the HKMA is working with the Hong Kong government to prepare for an inaugural bond to be issued from the Hong Kong's government's HK$200 billion (US$25.8 billion) bond programme.