Islamic Finance Conference Hopes to Propel Industry to New Heights in U.S.

10/7/2013 1:52:32 PM

Is the United States an undiscovered market for Islamic Finance? That’s the question a conference organized by the Malaysia-US Chamber of Commerce hopes to answer in Washington, DC on November 4th. The event, whose program includes sessions exploring everything from how to source Islamic capital in the United States to the relationship between socially responsible investing and Islam, is intended to serve as a meeting place to help interested parties come together and advance the cause of Islamic finance in the U.S.

“It’s really about creating opportunities for everyone,” says Roy Michael, event organizer with the Malaysia-US Chamber of Commerce. “The Chamber recognizes the potential value of developing Islamic capital and credit markets in the United States. Our goal is to play a constructive role and to facilitate growth.”

According to Michael, the conference seeks to create an avenue for engagement with key financial players as well as promote innovative financial instruments—for example, Sukuk—in the United States.

Opening the US market
The Malaysia-US Chamber of Commerce hopes to make the event a “meeting of the minds,” bringing leaders from Malaysia, which has a highly developed Islamic economy, to interact with political and business leaders in the United States, which still lags East Asia, GCC nations, and much of Europe in terms of deepening its relationship with Islamic finance. Globally, Islamic finance is $2 trillion industry, including asset management and infrastructure projects. There are roughly 600 financial institutions operating in more than 75 jurisdictions globally.

Beyond dialogue and building business partnerships, the Chamber hopes to use the event as a springboard for the creation of a permanent advocacy wing dedicated to the promotion of Islamic finance in the United States. “The conference isn’t just about getting together once in a while to touch base,” say Michael. “It’s about starting down the long road of building real and lasting growth in the United States.”

Event details
“Islamic Finance: An Undiscovered Market in the United States” will be held from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm on November 4, 2013 at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, DC. Azzad will be speaking at the panel on SRI Investing and Islam.

Opinions expressed are those of the author or fund manager, are subject to change, are not guaranteed and should not be considered recommendations to buy or sell any security and should not be considered investment advice.

Fund holdings and sector allocations are subject to change and are not a recommendation to buy or sell any security. Click here for Azzad Ethical Fund current top 10 holdings. Click here for the Azzad Wise Capital Fund current top 10 holdings.

Past performance does not guarantee future results.

The Azzad Ethical Fund is non-diversified and may invest a larger percentage of its assets in fewer companies exposing it to more volatility and/or market risk than diversified funds. The Fund may not achieve its objective and/or could lose money on your investment in the Fund. Stock markets and investments in individual stocks can decline significantly in response to issuer, market, economic, political, regulatory, geographical, and other conditions. Investments in mid-cap companies can be more volatile than investments in larger companies. Investments in growth companies can be more sensitive to the company’s earnings and more volatile than the stock market in general. Because the portfolio may invest substantial amount of its asset in issuers located in a single country or in a limited number of countries, it may be more volatile that a portfolio that is more geographically diversified. See the prospectus for more details about risks.

Investments in smaller and medium sized companies involve additional risks such as limited liquidity and greater volatility. Investments in debt securities typically decrease in value when interest rates rise. This risk is usually greater for longer-term debt securities. Investments in lower rated and non-rated securities present a great risk of loss to principal and interest than higher rated securities.

The Azzad Wise Capital Fund is non-diversified with a high concentration of securities in the financial sector which can expose the Fund to more volatility and/or market risk than diversified funds. The Fund may not achieve its objective and/or could lose money on your investment in the Fund. The Fund mainly invests in securities issues by foreign entities which expose the Fund to country specific risks such as market, economic, political, regulatory, geographical, and other risks. The Fund intends to invest in certain instruments that may be illiquid. As a result, if the Fund receives large amount of redemptions, the Fund may be forced to sell such illiquid investments at a significant loss to be able to meet such redemption requests. See the prospectus for more details about risks.