BMA wins prestigious award for sukuk deal

Published October 4th, 2005 - 07:50 GMT

The Bahrain Monetary Agency (BMA) has won a prestigious Deal of the Year award for an Ijara sukuk (Islamic leasing bonds) issue.

The award for Best Sovereign Deal in Local Currency has been made for a BD30 million (about US$79.5 million) issue of Ijara sukuk. The sukuk, carrying a five-year maturity, was issued by the BMA in February 2005.

The award has been conferred by Emerging Markets (EM) newspaper. The EM Awards for best debt deals are presented annually on the sidelines of the World Bank-IMF Annual Meetings held in Washington DC in September every year.

Dr Abdul Rahman Saif, Executive Director, Corporate Services, received the award on BMA’s behalf during the IMF-World Bank meetings, held in Washington DC on 24th & 25th September 2005. The award was presented by Mr. Jonathan Hodder, Associated Publisher of Emerging Markets.

The BD30 million sukuk deal was BMA’s 11th issue of medium to long term Ijara sukuk. The total value of medium to long term Ijara sukuk, issued by the BMA so far, US$1.21 billion, of which US$1.14 billion is outstanding.

“The BMA is delighted to receive this award, which is a demonstration of international recognition for the pioneering work being undertaken by the BMA in the area of Islamic finance,” said Dr Saif.


 “The BMA is committed to the development and advancement of Islamic banking and finance and to reinforce Bahrain’s status as the leading center for Islamic finance.”

BMA was the first central bank to develop and issue comprehensive prudential regulations for Islamic banks, he pointed out. The Prudential Information and Regulatory Framework for Islamic financial institutions (PIRI), introduced in 2002, covers issues related to capital adequacy, asset quality, the management of investment accounts, corporate governance, earnings quality and liquidity management.

In the area of Islamic debt market instruments, the BMA has been at the forefront of developing and issuing sukuk. A rolling programme of monthly issuance of short term commodity-backed securities, Sukuk Al-Salam, has been in place since June 2001.

More recently, BMA has pioneered yet another sukuk structure --- a short term, tradable Sukuk Al-Ijara of six-months (182 days) maturity. BMA’s debut issue of Sukuk Al-Ijara was issued on 25th August 2005 and matures on 23rd February 2006. The sukuk, which is asset backed, is being issued on a monthly basis by the BMA. Each issue is worth BD10 million (US$27 million).




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