Philippines’ central bank will fast-track the issuance of regulations and rules for the development of Islamic finance in the country as soon as the Islamic banking law is approved by the president, the Manila Bulletin reported on Wednesday.
The bill has been passed by both houses of Congress.
Manila Bulletin quoted central bank governor Benjamin Diokno as saying the law will put in place a sound legal and regulatory framework for the development of Islamic banks in the country.
The central bank, said the report, will issue circulars within months after the approval and signing of the Islamic banking bill.
It did not give a timeline for when the president is expected to approve and sign the Islamic banking bill.
Philippines has been accelerating the growth of its Islamic economy sectors in the last couple of years.
The Southeast Asian country’s interest in Islamic finance is primarily two-fold: to attract Shariah-sensitive foreign investments and capital from Islamic countries, as well as to provide its approximately 10 million domestic Muslim population with an Islamic banking option.
The country also hopes to increase its exports to Muslim-majority countries and has been developing its halal infrastructure to support this goal.
Its national halal certification scheme was launched last year by the Philippine Halal Export Development and Promotion Board, and in February the Department of Science and Technology opened the Philippine National Halal Laboratory and Science Centre.
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