Lebanon’s Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh suggested during a conference on Islamic financial institutions, addressing 350 bankers from 24 countries, that additional time is needed before Islamic banks can fully operate in Lebanon.
Salameh told the participants that the nature of work between Islamic and conventional banks urges the central bank to be careful in preserving stability in the banking system and safeguarding the flow of money in the country’s financial markets. Several Islamic banks have requested permission to open branches in Lebanon and operate according to principles of the “Sharia” law prohibiting interest-based transactions.
Meanwhile, director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Paul Chabrier asked Islamic financial institutions to adopt common accounting standards and transparent reporting systems to correctly assess their financial performance. With $10 billion of combined worldwide capital, Islamic banks have more than $170 billion of assets with focused investments in the Middle East and a reported 15 percent growth in 2000. — ( Banque du Liban et d'Outre-Mer Sal )
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )