Brunei Institute of Leadership & Islamic Finance (BILIF), in collaboration with International Centre for Education in Islamic Finance (INCEIF), Malaysia, and with the support from Autoriti Monetari Brunei Darussalam (AMBD), recently held the Brunei Darussalam Islamic Capital Market Conference (BICAM).

BICAM 2021 is a platform that showcases Bruneian talents on their credibility and knowledge particularly in the field of the Islamic capital market. 

During the two-day conference, participants had the opportunity to discuss issues and challenges pertaining to the development of the Islamic capital market especially in Brunei Darussalam’s context and subsequently, discuss strategies to promote resiliency, sustainability and inclusivity of an Islamic capital market ecosystem. 

Participants also had the opportunity to learn about other countries’ experiences on the impact of capital market growth. 

Attending as the Guest of Honor was Minister of Home Affairs Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Kerna Dato Seri Setia (Dr) Haji Awang Abu Bakar Haji Apong, as the Deputy Chairman of the AMBD’s Board of Directors. Also in attendance were members of AMBD’s Board of Directors, BILIF’s Board of Directors, as well as senior officers from government ministries and agencies, AMBD, banks and private companies. 

Image: Iqbal Dato Selamat

The event commenced with welcoming remarks by Managing Director of AMBD and Chairperson of BILIF’s Board of Directors Hajah Rokiah Haji Badar,

In her welcoming remarks, she highlighted the significant milestones achieved in AMBD’s efforts towards striving to become an international hub for Islamic finance. 

Moving forward, she shared plans to spur the domestic capital market to further diversify domestic investment opportunities, in line with Syariah standards. 

Image: Iqbal Dato Selamat

She also shared that with the growing importance for Sustainable, Responsible and Impact (SRI) investing, AMBD has undertaken initiatives in developing sustainable finance in Brunei Darussalam through its Sustainable Finance Task Force (SFTF) which is responsible for monitoring the global and regional development of sustainable finance, as well as working hand in hand with market players to foster the sustainability agenda. 

In his keynote address, the minister emphasised the potential of Islamic finance to catalyse socio-economic advancement as the financial returns generated also entail positive social and environmental impacts. 

The risk-sharing feature in Islamic finance and its alignment to the objective of Syariah or the Maqasid Al-Syariah makes it a natural vehicle towards the creation of a sustainable economy. Nevertheless, the potential for more innovative solutions and opportunities in Islamic finance lies largely untapped, especially in the Islamic capital market sector. 

Image: Iqbal Dato Selamat

In this regard, the use of a more diverse set of financial instruments such as Islamic social finance tools (zakat, waqf and sadaqah), sukuk and Islamic FinTech can further be explored to help Islamic finance deliver even greater impact in stimulating a more vibrant Islamic finance industry. 

Yang Berhormat also emphasised the importance of continuous collaborations among key players in realising the vision of resilient, sustainable and inclusive economic growth.

During the first day of the conference, the Minister of Finance of Indonesia Sri Mulyani Indrawati gave a keynote presentation entitled Stimulating the Development of Islamic Capital Market Sector: A Story from Indonesia virtually. 

Meanwhile, President and CEO of INCEIF Malaysia Professor Dato’ Dr. Mohd Azmi Omar also delivered a keynote presentation on Fueling an Inclusive and Sustainable Future through Islamic Capital Market. 

Image: Iqbal Dato Selamat

Topics that were deliberated during the day included Building an Innovative and Sustainable Islamic Capital Market; Creating a Vibrant and Resilient Islamic Capital Market; and Intersections between Islamic, Green and Sustainable Finance: Issues and Challenges. 

Amongst the local and international speakers present include Wan Rizaidy Wan Mamat Saufi from AMBD; Dr Awang Ahmad Lutfi Haji Abdul Razak of Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD); Founder of RFI Foundation, United Kingdom Blake Goud; Dr Eskandar Shah Mohd Rasid from INCEIF, Malaysia; and Assistant Secretary-General of Islamic Finance Standards Board (IFSB) Dr Rifki Ismal.

Image: Iqbal Dato Selamat

Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, BICAM 2021 was conducted as a hybrid event, where local speakers and participants attended the conference physically, while international speakers and participants participated virtually.

BICAM 2021 is held to support the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism’s (MPRT) Brunei Mid-Year Conference and Exhibition (MYCE) event, specifically in the first week of the month-long event, carrying the theme “Islamic Week”. 

BICAM 2021 will continue on Thursday, 3 June 2021. Updates on BICAM 2021 are available through BILIF’s Instagram account @BILIF.bn, and through BILIF’s website at www.bilif.com.bn

This article was first published on June 5, 2021 in our Weekly E-Paper issue 144

THE BRUNEIAN | BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

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