Islamic Banking Seminar rated as excellent

Mr. M. Ashraf Janjua suggested that factors including inflation must be duly taken care of

By Shabbir H. Kazmi
July 30 - Aug 05 , 2001

Hamdard University organized a one-day seminar on Zero Interest Banking held on Thursday, July 12, 2001 at Hotel Pearl Continental, Karachi, which was inaugurated by Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, Finance Minister Sindh. Other eminent speakers included: Dr. Ismail Saad, Vice Chancellor, Hamdard University, Dr. Ali Sarwar Rizvi, Director, HIMS, Hamdard University, Mr. Shahid Jamil, FCA an International Consultant on Zero-Free Banking specially arrived from the UK to address the seminar. Others who spoke on the occasion were Dr. Ghulam Murtaza Malik, an eminent Islamic Scholar, Dr. Arshad Zaman, Former Chief Economist & Special Planning Secretary Government of Pakistan, Dr. Tariq Hassan, Advisor to the Finance Minister and Member Task Force, Ministry of Finance, Syed Iradat Hussain, Founder Chairman Modaraba Association of Pakistan and Former President MCB, Mr. Imran-ul-Hasan, Consultant, Re-engineering & Change Management, Mr. Sultan Ahmad, Senior Columnist & Dr. Ahsan H. Khan, Divisional Head, Islamic Banking Division, United Bank Limited.

In his inaugural address, Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh said that the experiences of other Islamic countries should become the benchmark in introducing a Riba-Free system in Pakistan. "This would ensure an effective and pure Riba-Free system in letter and spirit." This was stated by Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh that " Riba-Free system should not be adopted in isolation, as changes were needed in laws and assurance of good governance, transparency etc," he further added.

The seminar, attended by eminent scholars and bankers stressed upon the need for quick implementation of Riba-Free system while emphasizing that many factors must be considered before embarking on this change.

Dr. Tariq Hasan, Advisor to the Finance Minister and Member Task Force, Ministry of Finance traced in detail the introduction of this system in Pakistan and suggested more research.

Dr. Malik Ghulam Murtaza, an eminent Islamic scholar criticized IMF and the forces opposed to this system. " I am happy to learn that a leading nationalized commercial bank UBL is poised to introduce Modaraba, Mutual Funds and other Islamic products. This would be a positive step in the right direction."

Dr. Arshad Zaman, Former Chief Economist & Special Planning Secretary Government of Pakistan & Mr. Zaigham Mahmood Rizvi, Managing Director Pak-Kuwait Investment Company traced historical perspective of Islamic Banking & suggested how it could be implemented in the present day society.

Dr. Ahsan H. Khan, Divisional Head, Islamic Banking Division, UBL suggested that Islamic Banking products will have to be structured in such a way that they intrinsically comply with Shariah principles.

Mr. Imran-ul-Hasan, Consultant, Re-engineering & Change Management, in his paper "Islamic Banking, a case for Managing Change" dwelt upon how people resist change & emphasized the need to formulate new Shariah Compliant business models tailored to market requirements.

At the after-noon session, in his keynote address, Mr. M. Ashraf Janjua, Chief Economic Advisor & Secretary Commission for Transformation of Financial System, SBP suggested that factors including inflation must be duly taken care of.

The technical delegates from various banks & financial institutions rated the seminar as excellent.