KFUPM to offer new Islamic banking course

Updated 22 September 2013

KFUPM to offer new Islamic banking course

The volume of Islamic banking globally reached $1.5 trillion and estimated to hit $2.1 trillion by 2015, or an increase of 30 percent, local media said quoting experts.
Meanwhile, head of the Excellence Center for Banking Studies and Islamic Finance at Dhahran-based King Fahd University for Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM), Salah Al-Shalhoub stated that the university plans to introduce a program for executive master in Islamic banking to provide trained and qualified cadres for the labor market in the Kingdom.
There is a considerable expansion of Islamic banking in the Kingdom in the last 10 years as well as cooperative insurance companies and sukuk (Islamic bonds) markets, Shalhoub told Al-Riyadh daily.
He said Islamic products have widely and noticeably spread in the banking sector and the growth rate of Islamic banking in the Kingdom has been estimated at 30 percent per annum.
He said the Islamic banking applied in the Kingdom was an important stage for the establishment of a solid base for this kind of banking.
Though the existence of Islamic (advisory) boards in banks is important, it is not the required mechanism to achieve sustainable development of Islamic banking and there must be clear-cut regulations derived from Shariah and properly applied to ensure the safety of accounting procedures in accordance with the known and accepted accounting principles in the banks, he was quoted as saying.
Dean of the Institute of Islamic Economics at King Abdulaziz University Abdullah Quriyan stated that Islamic banking is widely applied in Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Britain, and other GCC countries.
“Full leadership of the Islamic banking should originate in the Kingdom which is being strongly sought in this direction, especially if we take into consideration the fact that liquidity in all countries applying Islamic banking is mostly Saudi capital,” he said.
He urged the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) to issue regulations and systems to help organize the Islamic banking in the Kingdom.
On the other hand, professor of the Chair of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques for Islamic Jurisprudence and scholar at Harvard Law School, Frank Vogel, said the Kingdom lacks legislations from the concerned bodies supervising Islamic banking.
He said Islamic banking needs qualified and skilled cadres to improve Islamic banking which, he said, is attainable if appropriate academic programs are adopted and introduced.


Oil falls below $57 on virus impact and OPEC+ delay

Updated 19 February 2020

Oil falls below $57 on virus impact and OPEC+ delay

  • Contagion ‘is spooking market players,’ analysts say after Asian shares fall and Apple issues warning

LONDON: Oil fell below $57 a barrel on Tuesday, pressured by concerns over the impact on crude demand from the coronavirus outbreak in China and a lack of further action by OPEC and its allies to support the market.

Forecasters including the International Energy Agency (IEA) have cut 2020 oil demand estimates because of the virus. Though new cases in mainland China have dipped, global experts say it is too early to judge if the outbreak is being contained.

Brent crude was down 82 cents at $56.85 a barrel in mid-afternoon trade after rallying in the previous five sessions. US West Texas Intermediate crude fell 70 cents to $51.35.

“Risk aversion has returned to the markets,” said Commerzbank analyst Carsten Fritsch.

“OPEC+ has shown no sign yet of reacting to the virus-related slump in demand by making additional production cuts.”

The virus is having a wider impact on companies and financial markets. Asian shares fell and Wall Street was poised to retreat on Tuesday after Apple said it would miss quarterly revenue guidance owing to weakened demand in China.

“This has spooked market players and triggered a sharp pullback in risk assets,” said Tamas Varga of oil broker PVM.

The IEA last week said that first-quarter oil demand is likely to fall by 435,000 barrels per day (bpd) from the same period last year in the first quarterly decline since the financial crisis in 2009.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies, including Russia, have been considering further production cuts to tighten supply and support prices.

The group, known as OPEC+, has a pact to cut oil output by 1.7 million bpd until the end of March.

The next OPEC+ meeting next month is set to consider an advisory panel’s recommendation to cut supply by a further 600,000 bpd. Talks on holding an earlier meeting in February appear to have made no progress, OPEC sources said.

As well as OPEC+ voluntary curbs, support for prices has come from involuntary losses in Libya, where output has collapsed since Jan. 18 because of a blockade of ports and oilfields.