Tajik lender switches to Islamic banking

Tajik lender switches to Islamic banking
Open Joint-Stock Company (OJSC) Sohibkorbonk (Tajik joint-stock bank for entrepreneurship support) is at the final stage to become the first full-fledged Islamic bank in Tajikistan. 
According to information posted on the bank’s website, by decision of an annual meeting of shareholders OJSC Sohibkorbonk has been converted into OJSC Tawhidbonk 
Sohibkorbonk began converting operations to become a full-fledged Islamic bank in October of 2017.  Chairman of Sohibkorbonk Board Sherali Zardov and the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD) chief executive Khaled Al-Aboodi signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in Dushanbe in early October of 2017. 
Sohibkorbonk was registered with the National Bank of Tajikistan (NBT) as diversified bank in 1999.  Established on the basis Tojikbankbiznes, Sohibkorbonk, with headquarters in Dushanbe, has five branches and 42 banking service centers in various regions of the country.   
As it had been reported earlier, Tajik lender Bonki Rushdi Tojikiston (Tajikistan Development Bank) planned to switch to Islamic banking in 2015, after it signed an agreement with ICD to advice on the transition.   However, no specific decisions have been made so far. 
Recall, the law on Islamic banking in Tajikistan came into force on August 5, 2014.
Islamic banking is a banking activity that is consistent with the principles of Sharia and its practical application through the development of Islamic economics.  Sharia prohibits the fixed or floating payment or acceptance of specific interest or fees (known as riba, or usury) for loans of money.  Investing in businesses that provide goods or services considered contrary to Islamic principles is also haraam ("sinful and prohibited").  Although these principles have been applied in varying degrees by historical Islamic economies due to lack of Islamic practice, only in the late 20th century were a number of Islamic banks formed to apply these principles to private or semi-private commercial institutions within the Muslim community.
Islamic banking has the same purpose as conventional banking: to make money for the banking institute by lending out capital.  But that is not the sole purpose either.  Adherence to Islamic law and ensuring fair play is also at the core of Islamic banking.  Because Islam forbids simply lending out money at interest, Islamic rules on transactions (known as Fiqh al-Muamalat) have been created to prevent it.  The basic principle of Islamic banking is based on risk-sharing which is a component of trade rather than risk-transfer which is seen in conventional banking.
Islamic banks reportedly have more than 300 institutions spread over 51 countries, including the United States through companies such as the Michigan-based University Bank, as well as an additional 250 mutual funds that comply with Islamic principles.

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