Nigeria and Ivory Coast have begun negotiations with the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), a subsidiary of the Islamic Development Bank, for sukuk issuance, reports Reuters on March 17th.
According to the head of the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), Khaled Al-Aboodi cited by Reuters, Nigeria and Ivory Coast are looking to emulate Senegal’s successful move into the market for Islamic bonds.
The same source has recalled that “The ICD helped arrange Senegal’s debut 100 billion FCFA ($208 million) Islamic bonds, also known as sukuk, last June”.
Al-Aboodi added that they were exploring with Nigeria and Ivory Coast. The issuance by Senegal has opened up the whole region, he said. The ICD hopes to support at least two countries in 2015 to issue a sukuk. Meanwhile, Niger has signed up for a sukuk programme worth 150 billion CFA francs ($260 million), although the timing has yet to be determined.
“The successful issuance of a sukuk by Senegal has cleared the land in Africa. We hope to support this year at least two countries of the continent in their Islamic bond issuance programs, “added Mr. Al-Aboodi. In addition to Nigeria and Côte d’Ivoire, Niger has already signed an agreement with the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the private sector to issue a sukuk of 150 billion FCFA.
Strong growth in the Middle East and Southeast Asia, Islamic finance is still underdeveloped in Africa which is home to some 400 million Muslims. The Islamic Corporation for the Development of the private sector is present in Africa through its subsidiary Tamweel Africa Holdings, which owns stakes in Islamic banks in Senegal, Niger, Guinea and Mauritania. The organization now plans to set up in Mali, Benin and Côte d’Ivoire. It also plans to launch an investment fund and one leasing company dedicated to small and medium enterprises in Africa.