More than 400 international & regional leaders gather to discuss new growth opportunities Posted on May 30th

The 4th Annual World Islamic Funds & Capital Markets Conference (WIFCMC 2008), which will be held at Gulf International Convention Centre, Bahrain on May 26 & 27, will be inaugurated by Central Bank of Bahrain governor Rasheed M. Al Maraj.The event, which annually attracts more than 400 international delegates from leading conventional & Islamic banks, regional & international fund managers, investors, asset managers, senior regulatory representatives, legal specialists, and influential Shari’ah scholars, has become the most important gathering of decision-makers in the dynamically growing Islamic investments industry.The conference will feature an outstanding speaker faculty representing the market leaders in the Islamic investments, banking and finance industry, with a focus on innovation in Islamic products.

Key speakers will include Mohamed Hedi Mejai, Executive Director, Direct Investment & Business Development, International Investment Bank (IIB), Dr Bakri A. Bashir Head of Strategic Planning & Business Development Eskan Bank, and Dhafer Alqahtani, Co-CEO & CIO of Arbah Capital.

Sameer Abdi Partner – Head of Islamic Financial Services Group Ernst & Young – (Bahrain) will present the launch of the 2nd Annual Islamic Funds and Investments Report (IFIR) at the conference, a ground-breaking mixture of both primary research and desk-based analysis that will offer unique insights into the dynamically growing Islamic investment markets.Abdul Rahman Al-Baker, Executive Director of Financial Institutions Supervision, Central Bank of Bahrain and Badlisyah Abdul Ghani, Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer, CIMB Islamic Bank Berhad will look at the key market developments as well as assess the potential for further growth.

Speakers on the session focusing on Islamic mortgages, property finance and securitisation will include Sabah Khalil Al Moayyed, General Manager, Eskan Bank, and Mohammad Asaria, VP Head of Principal Investments, at Rasameel Structured Finance.  Renowned Shari’ah scholar, Sheikh Essam Mohammed Ishaq and Dr. Fareed Mohammed Hadi Abdul Qader   Chairman – Department of Arabic & Islamic Studies, University of Bahrain will be the key contributors during the Shari’ah and Business Open Forum, an interactive discussion aimed at overcoming the challenges for balancing Shari’ah compliance and industry growth imperatives.

Other leading speakers include Dr. Omar Marwan Kamal, EVP- Investment Group Head, Al Salam Bank Bahrain, Bindesh P. Shah. Co-founder  Amiri Capital, Hesham M. Youssef, Executive Director, Investment First Investment Bank, B.S.C., Ahmed Abbas, Chief Executive Officer, Liquidity Management Centre B.S.C, Hossam Abdullah, Partner, Al-Sarraf & Al Ruwayeh, Asar Legal, Ijlal Ahmed Alvi, Chief Executive Officer, International Islamic Financial Market, Shamsun Anwar Hussain, Director, Global Market: Middle East, CIMB Islamic Bank Berhad, Harris Irfan, Director of Global Markets, Deutsche Bank AG, Douglas Clark Johnson, Chief Executive Officer, Calyx Financial LLC, and Trevor C. Regan, Chief Investment Officer, Al Rajhi Financial Services. A panel of speakers from Islamic International Rating Agency led by chief executive officer Jamal Abbas Zaidi will conduct the Ratings workshop that will look at the role of ratings in Islamic financial markets. The winners of the two prestigious Islamic Investments awards, The Annual Funds Excellence Awards 2008 and The Innovation Award will also be announced at the Gala Dinner of the conference


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