Research: Only 2% of Islamic investment funds have HQ’s in UK
MENAFN – 14/11/2007

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(MENAFN) A research published by Trowers & Hamlins, the International law firm, showed that just 2 percent of Islamic investment funds now have their Head Offices based in the UK while 75 percent are head quartered within the Gulf Corporation Council (GCC) countries.

The research was based on a $25 billion sample of Islamic Investment funds from Eurekahedge, the largest independent hedge fund research company.

According to the research, the proportion of all Islamic investment funds selecting to base their head quarters in the UK has dropped by almost a third over the past 5 years, indicating that the UK cannot be complacent about its ability to attract the Islamic finance industry. The US, where post 9/11 problems over visas have been well publicised, has also seen its share drop from 7% to 5%.

A partner of Trowers & Hamlins said that the research figures indicate that although London is doing very well out of boom in Islamic finance, it is not the case in every aspect of the market. He added that in reality the Gulf region and Malaysia are attracting the vast bulk of Islamic investment funds.

He explained that the GCC tax regimes provide Islamic investment funds with a major incentive to base their Head Offices within the Gulf. GCC states are also is still looking at legislative and regulatory reform as another method of retaining and attracting financial institutions.

It is worth mentioning that more and more US and UK universities are beginning to recognise the advantages of running MBA courses in the Gulf. Cass Business School has just launched an MBA in with a specialist focus on Islamic finance in Dubai and London Business School now runs an MBA based jointly in London and Dubai.


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