Hugo Swire MP – The UK Government expects to back more Sukuk after recent Emirates airline sukuk guarantee, shows commitment to UK Islamic finance industry.
In a speech delivered on 24 March to the Reform Export Summit, Hugo Swire MP, the UK Government minister responsible for Islamic finance development in the UK spoke of the long-term economic trend and development of Islamic finance and how the UK is positioning itself to take advantage of this growth.
Outlining the strong fundamentals of the UK economy with the fastest growth in the G7, employment at record levels and inflation at its lowest rate on record, Mr Swire stated, “I think there is a particularly important role for government in identifying the really significant long-term economic trends and opportunities, and positioning the UK to take advantage of them. So, for example, we are determined to ensure that London – as Prime Minister David Cameron once put it – “stands alongside Dubai and Kuala Lumpur as one of the great capitals of Islamic Finance anywhere in the world.”
Mr Swire further stated, “In June last year, we became the first country outside the Islamic world to issue sovereign Islamic ‘Sukuk’ bonds. We see enormous potential in this – we had orders totalling ten times the value of the bond issue. So we want to do more right across the Islamic Finance sector. I was in Kuala Lumpur only last month hosting a round-table of key industry figures, and I have since announced that UK Export Finance, which is already backing a proposed sale of Shariah-compliant bonds (Sukuk) by Emirates airlines, expects to make similar guarantees available for future transactions in other industries”.