The 7th London Sukuk Summit Awards for 2013, which was held on the evening of the 12th June 2013 at the Jumeirah Carlton Hotel at a Gala Awards Dinner, hosted by the organiser, ICG-Events, once again proved highly successful with Qatar, Turkey and Malaysia receiving the three main honours. The main objective of the Awards is to recognise the outstanding contribution by and achievements of individuals, institutions, supranationals and financial centres serving the global Islamic financial services industry, especially the proliferating global Sukuk market.
Indeed, in recognition of its proactive support of the Islamic finance industry both at home and abroad, and especially through its current Chairmanship of the Governing Councils of both the Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB) and the International Islamic Liquidity Management Corporation (IILM), the Qatar Central Bank (QCB) was honoured with the ‘Award of Excellence for Outstanding Contribution by a Regulator to Islamic Financial Services’.
The Award was received by Sheikh Khalid Bin Saoud Al-Thani, Director of the Financial Stability Department, QCB, on behalf of Sheikh Abdullah Saoud Al-Thani, QCB Governor and Current Chair of the Governing Councils of the IFSB and IILM.
In the citation, Mushtak Parker, Editor of Islamic Banker, who handed out the Awards to the recipients, highlighted the achievements of Sovereign Qatar in the Sukuk space over the last year, including the spectacular success of Sovereign Qatar’s second international Sukuk issued in 2012 – a dual-tranche US$4 billion Sukuk Al-Ijarah, which attracted a staggering record order book of US$24 billion and was priced cheaper than an equivalent Qatar conventional bond.
Similarly, in March this year, the QCB followed in the footsteps of Bank Negara Malaysia, the Central Bank of Bahrain, Bank of Indonesia, the State Bank of Pakistan and the Central bank of Turkey, by launching its debut sovereign local currency Qatari Riyal Sukuk – a QR1 billion issuance with a 9-month maturity. This issuance is the first of a regular programme of issuances to facilitate liquidity and reserve management of local Qatari Islamic banks.
The Awards Organiser also honoured two individuals who have contributed extensively to the development of Islamic financial services and capital markets over the last two decades.
Professor Datuk Rifaat Ahmed Abdel Karim, CEO, International Islamic Liquidity Management Corporation (IILM), was honoured with ‘The Award of Excellence for Outstanding Contribution to the Development of the Islamic financial Services Industry’. Professor Rifaat, who is widely known as one of the pioneers of the architecture of the global industry, was the inaugural Secretary General of the Accounting and Auditing Organisation for Islamic Financial Institutions (AAOIFI) and of the IFSB, where he played a crucial role in introducing accounting standards and prudential and supervisory standards respectively for the Islamic finance industry. He was brought out of semi-retirement to take over the helm at the IILM, whose mandate is to facilitate short-term cross-border liquidity for the global Islamic finance industry. Indeed in April this year, the IILM announced the launch of its inaugural Sukuk Programme, with the debut tranche to follow in the autumn of 2013.
Similarly, Dato Dr Nik Ramlah Mahmood, Deputy Chief Executive, Securities Commission Malaysia, was honoured with ‘The Award of Excellence for Outstanding Leadership in Islamic Capital Market Regulation’. This individual Award recognises her more than 18 years contribution to the development of Islamic capital markets regulation and enforcement; regulatory reform, product and market development; and investor education in Malaysia.
Dr Ramlah, the unassuming champion of Islamic capital market reform and development, is also a core member of the OECD Asia Roundtable on Corporate Governance.
Another key accolade was ‘The Award of Excellence for Best Islamic Finance Centre ‘, which this year was won by Istanbul, Turkey. Over the last two years, Turkey has surprised the market with its pro-action to develop the Participation Banking sector in the country. It is the stated ambition of the Government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to develop Istanbul into a major international financial centre, which includes facilitating Istanbul as a Participation banking hub and a Gateway especially to the Muslim republics of Central Asia.
Sovereign Turkey last year issued its debut international Sukuk and two domestic currency Turkish lira Sukuk, with the latest one in February this year. Ankara has already announced that it intends to go to the international market to raise funds through a second Sukuk later this year.
“The linkages of this troika of Malaysia, Turkey and Qatar further consolidates what Governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz of Bank Negara Malaysia has championed as ‘the New Islamic Finance Silk Route’,” stressed Mr Parker.
One of the more poignant and perhaps understated Awards on the night went to the Islamic Corporation for the Insurance of Export Credits and Investment (ICIEC), the export credit agency of the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) Group. ICIEC was honoured with ‘The Award of Excellence for Outstanding Contribution to the Provision of Islamic Export Credit & Investment Insurance’, primarily for putting Shariah-compliant export credit insurance and investment insurance on the global map.
ICIEC is also in the process of launching a Sukuk Insurance Policy, which will provide insurance cover to investors initially in sovereign Sukuk and later in other Sukuk; and a Bank Master Policy for Istisna Financing, which will protect Islamic banks against non-payment risks of obligors in Istisna financing structures especially related to the construction and project industry.
The Awards also recognised the achievements of key market players in various categories such as Qatar International Islamic bank (QIIB) (for its debut international Sukuk Programme and tranche); Liquidity House (for successfully getting the mandates for the Sovereign Turkish Sukuk and the RFP for the proposed Debut South African Sovereign Sukuk); Qinvest (for its work in investment banking and Sukuk structuring), Sharjah Islamic Bank (for its recent second international Sukuk); AmInvest (for its work in Islamic asset management and reflects their fund management expertise and capabilities built over more than three decades), DDCAP Limited (for its dominance in Islamic intermediation, investment and commodity brokerage services); Rasameel Structured Finance (for structuring the first corporate Sukuk issuance out of Kuwait) and FWU Group (for its pioneering Sukuk where the underlying was intellectual property rights).
QIIB was also recognised for its steady progress in the face of stiff competition from rival Islamic banks in Qatar including Qatar Islamic Bank, Al Rayan and Barwa Bank. The QIIB Award was accepted by the Bank’s Chairman and Managing Director, Sheikh Khalid bin Thani bin Abdullah Al-Thani.
The final two Awards went to KPMG, the international accounting, auditing and advisory firm for its ‘Outstanding Contribution by an Accounting Firm to Islamic Financial Services’ and to Path Solutions as ‘The Best Islamic IT Solutions Provider’.
Below is the Full List of Award Winners:
2013 London Sukuk Summit Awards
Award of Excellence for Outstanding Contribution by a Regulator to Islamic Financial Services Qatar Central Bank
Award of Excellence for Outstanding Contribution to the Development of the Islamic financial Services Industry Professor Datuk Rifaat Ahmed Abdel Karim – CEO, International Islamic Liquidity Management Corporation (IILM)
Award of Excellence for Outstanding Leadership in Islamic Capital Market Regulation Dato Dr Nik Ramlah Mahmood – Deputy Chief Executive, Securities Commission Malaysia
Award of Excellence for Outstanding Contribution to the Provision of Islamic Export Credit & Investment Insurance Islamic Corporation for the Insurance of Export Credits and Investment (ICIEC)
Award of Excellence for Best Islamic Finance Centre Istanbul, Turkey
Award of Excellence for Best lead Arranger(s) of a Sukuk Structure (For the Turkish Sovereign Sukuk) Liquidity House
Award of Excellence for Best Islamic Investment Bank & Best Sukuk Structure House in Qatar Qinvest
Award of Excellence for Best Islamic Financial Institution in Qatar QIIB
Award of Excellence for Best Sukuk Structuring House in UAE Sharjah Islamic Bank
Award of Excellence for Outstanding Contribution by an Accounting Firm to Islamic Financial Services KPMG
Award of Excellence for Best Islamic Fund Manager(s) AmInvest
Award of Excellence for Best Structuring Intermediary in Debt Capital Markets DDCAP Ltd
Award of Excellence for Best Islamic Structure Finance House in the GCC Rasameel Structured Finance
Award of Excellence for Most Innovative Sukuk Structure FWU Group
Award of Excellence for Best Islamic IT Solutions Provider Path Solutions