‘Govt welcomes Islamic financing options for businesses’

‘Govt welcomes Islamic financing options for businesses’

THE Zanzibar Trade and Industrial Development Minister Omar Said Shaaban has said the government recognises the Islamic financing system as important tool for the economic and social development in the country.

“Both private and public financial institutions have been helping entrepreneurs, SMEs and other businesses to grow.

“Islamic banking and Insurance which are practiced along Shariah laws and Islamic principles provide more opportunity in business to people,” Minister Shaaban said.

The minister said that at the one-day training (quarterly series on Islamic finance in Tanzania) under the theme ‘Halal Financing Options for Business’ and also Takafur Insurance.

The training was attended by members from saving groups, NGOs, students, importers & exporters, entrepreneurs, SMEs, and people planning to do business.

The Minister thanked the Centre of Islamic Finance Compliance and Advice (CIFCA), ABRAR Consult, Shirkah; and Pink Hijab Initiative for organising the training aimed to educate people and promote the Islamic finance services in the country.

“The government recognises the importance of access to finance services to our citizens and in achieving our goal of making Zanzibar a business hub, we will continue our efforts to work closely with all financial institutions in the country,” Mr Shaaban said.

He informed the gathering that the Ministry under his docket would ensure good environment for the establishment of new and existing businesses by improving both policy and laws, and provide education on the business and its operation.

Also in encouraging citizens to take advantage of various opportunities to access capital including the Islamic based  religious teaching about acceptable or valid (Halal) business.

“As we struggle to attract investors and encourage people mainly women and unemployed youths to engage in trade,” he said.

He also said they will put emphasis on eliminating red-tape and delays in decision-making, solving various concerns raised by traders, and ensuring easy and affordable access to the various services required in business and industrial operations such as water, electricity, and security. 

Experts in Islamic financing including Dr Muhsin Masoud who is the Managing Director of the Peoples Bank of Zanzibar (PBZ), Mr Khalfan Abdalla from CIFCA, Mr Salum Awadhi, Dr Kassm Hussein, and Prof Mohammad Hafidh from CIFCA explained about the Islamic financing and how members of the small business community benefit. 

The workshop focused on providing education, encouraging and sharing experiences in the running of business activities and how to acquire capital so that they run business better for their benefit and country as a whole.

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