UK to become the first country outside of the Islamic world to issue an Islamic bond

 

Press release

PM to unveil plans for new Islamic index on London Stock Exchange

 

London Stock Exchange is creating a new way of identifying Islamic finance opportunities by launching a world-leading Islamic Market Index.

The Prime Minister will unveil ground-breaking plans for a new Islamic index on the London Stock Exchange today as he declares Britain is open for business at the opening of the World Islamic Economic Forum.

The Prime Minister will deliver his message to more than 1,800 political and business leaders from over 115 countries who have travelled to London for the ninth World Islamic Economic Forum – and the first held outside a Muslim country.

Global Islamic investments have soared by 150 per cent since 2006 and are expected to be worth £1.3 trillion next year.

In a speech today, the Prime Minister will announce that:

  • the government would like the UK to become the first country outside of the Islamic world to issue an Islamic bond; the Treasury is working on the practicalities of issuing a bond-like Sukuk worth around £200 million, which we hope to launch as early as next year
  • London Stock Exchange is creating a new way of identifying Islamic finance opportunities by launching a world-leading Islamic Market Index; strengthening FTSE’s leading position as a developer of innovative, alternatively-weighted indices, this index will be another global first for the City of London
  • the UK government is partnering with the Shell Foundation to create a new £4.5 million grant to boost the work of the Nomou initiative – a growth fund that provides skills and finance to small businesses across the Middle East and the Gulf, which will provide opportunities for British companies in the longer-term.

Speaking at the World Islamic Economic Forum, the Prime Minister is expected to say:

Time and again London has adapted and evolved first to welcome new investment and provide new ways of doing business. Already London is the biggest centre for Islamic finance outside the Islamic world. And today our ambition is to go further still. Because I don’t just want London to be a great capital of Islamic finance in the Western world, I want London to stand alongside Dubai as one of the great capitals of Islamic finance anywhere in the world.

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