Islamic banking assets to boost UAE’s halal sector

Updated 02 July 2017
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Islamic banking assets to boost UAE’s halal sector

The United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) 522-billion-dirham Islamic banking assets will help fuel the growth of the country’s halal sector, according to research conducted by Orange Fairs and Events, organisers of the Halal Expo Dubai 2017.
Seven Islamic banks out of the 23 registered commercial banks in the UAE represent nearly a fifth of the country’s banking assets. Islamic banks’ assets grew more than three times of the conventional banks’ assets during the first quarter of 2017, according to the UAE Central Bank’s latest quarterly report.
“In the first quarter of 2017, Islamic banks’ assets had a higher growth (3.2 percent) than the conventional ones (1 percent), while on an annual basis Islamic banks grew by 8 percent and continued to dominate the conventional banks growth that showed an increase of 5.9 percent,” the report, issued by the UAE Central Bank, said.
“The share of conventional banks’ assets at the end of 2017 Q1 is 80.3 percent of the total, while the share of the Islamic banks assets is 19.7 percent. Islamic banks’ financing growth has been dominating the conventional banks’ loans increase in the first quarter of 2017 in almost all subcategories, with exception of financing to government and GREs.”
Gross credit of the Islamic banks in the UAE recorded a 8.4 per cent growth to 343 billion dirhams — or nearly double the rate of 4.4 percent growth rate of gross credit of the conventional banks in the first quarter of 2017.
Similarly, domestic credit growth of the Islamic banks also rose 7.4 percent to 325 dirhams billion in the first quarter of 2017. The growth rate is nearly double than the 4.1 percent growth in domestic credit growth of the conventional banks.
Higher assets and gross credit growth rates empower the Islamic banks to fund the halal industries and help fuel the growth of halal or Islamic economic activities. By nature, Islamic banks engage in ethical finance and asset-based lending — that eliminates speculation-based high-risk financial activities and insulate the sector from economic crises — witnessed during the 2008-09 global financial crisis — when the asset-based ethical finance emerged stronger and helped Islamic banks to overcome the stress tests by a wider margin compared to the conventional lenders — many of whom collapsed and had to be bailed out by governments.


AHG denies link with Al-Habtoor Trading Enterprises

Updated 16 January 2019
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AHG denies link with Al-Habtoor Trading Enterprises

Al-Habtoor Group (AHG) has clarified that the group and all its divisions, including Habtoor Hospitality (Habtoor Hotels) have no link or relationship of any kind with Al-Habtoor Trading Enterprises (HTE) and its owner Rashid Al-Habtoor.

This is following news released in major Indian and Middle Eastern media about a potential acquisition of the Leela Group of Hotels in India (Hotel Leela venture) by Rashid Al-Habtoor, founder and owner of Al-Habtoor Trading Enterprises.

A spokesperson for Al-Habtoor Group said: “We feel obligated to clarify that Al-Habtoor Group in all its divisions and Al-Habtoor Trading Enterprises are two separate entities. Habtoor Hospitality, commonly known as Habtoor Hotels, is owned solely by Al-Habtoor Group in the UAE and overseas.”

“... Any actions or business decisions taken by Al-Habtoor Trading Enterprises or any of their associates are their sole responsibility, and Al-Habtoor Group is not liable under any circumstance for any damages or liabilities arising directly or indirectly from Al-Habtoor Trading Enterprises business ventures.”