What is the basis of Islamic finance and banking?
Islam teaches us about peace, cooperation, equality, and social progress. The importance of Islam and its teachings is not limited to worship, Hajj and Umrah. but it encompasses all the matters of life. The highest moral and ethical values form the basis of the Islamic financial system. Islam advocates the circulation of wealth in a society. When few people accumulate wealth in a society, corruption begins. Islam is a religion of justice and equity. Hence the following principles, guided by Islamic moral values, are the foundation of an Islamic finance and banking system.
- The system must strictly follow Shariah, which is Islamic law.
- Elimination of interest is fundamental to Islamic finance.
- Islamic banking promotes the concept of profit-sharing. If a business takes a loan from a bank, the business has to return the principal amount along with profit, rather than interest. If the business fails and incurs a loss, the bank bears the loss as well.
- Islamic banks investigate whether the business is involved in any practice that the religion prohibits, such as gambling, alcohol manufacturing, or pork-related activities.
- Islamic financial system also prohibits speculation as it increases instability and does not involve any material actualization.
Importance of Islamic finance and banking system for economic prosperity
The Islamic financial system promotes high ethical standards of working. It urges businesses to engage in fair practices and compete against each other. In such market conditions, consumers benefit as businesses strive to deliver better to gain more profit. Here are some reasons why the Islamic finance and banking system has great importance for socio-economic prosperity.
One of the basic principles of the Islamic banking system is sharing of profit and loss between the bank and the business. This promotes justice and equity in society. On the other hand, interest makes the borrower plunge deeper into debt, making the lending institution richer by unfair means. A society built on self-interest cannot thrive for long. Hence, Islam teaches us to care for each other.
- Promotes transparency: –
Shariah tells us to follow the highest standards of ethical business practices. Cost cutting through unfair means such as giving low wages or creating substandard goods is not an Islamic practice. Whatever businesses do, they are accountable for their conduct in an Islamic system.
Economic activity as a means of serving people, rather than amassing wealth: –
Islam is a religion of social welfare. It believes in working in such a way that one contributes positively to social progress. Hence it negates the concept of accumulation of wealth. Islam encourages people to spend money in the way of Allah. This transfers the wealth from the rich to the poor. When there is income equality, the crime rate and social instability decrease, bringing prosperity to society.
Following Shariah adds barakah to the economy: –
Following Shariah in financial matters brings barakah to the income. Provisions increase for society as a whole. People live happy and content life. They help each other in stressful times. Nowadays, people are so engrossed in the money-making rat race that they miss out on the simple pleasures of life. They give up on their families and social life and just focus on how to amass more wealth. When a society follows Shariah in financial matters, people have more time for their families and friends. They do not have a lust for money and power, which lets them leave in peace and harmony.
Future of Islamic finance and banking system: –
Post-covid, we have witnessed how the world suffered a global financial crisis, exposing the flaws of the conventional finance and banking system. Financial experts are increasingly recognizing the benefits and utility of the Islamic finance and banking system. Shariah-compliant financing is one of the fastest-growing financial systems. It has proved to tackle problems such as poverty, income inequality, and financial instability wherever it prevails, for example in Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia. Many non-Muslim countries are starting to include Islamic financial instruments as a part of their investment portfolio, owing to the benefits they provide.
What is Islamic finance and banking, and how does it differ from conventional finance and banking?
The Islamic finance and banking system complies with the Shariah law. The major difference between conventional and Islamic banking is that Islamic banking strictly prohibits the use of interest, while conventional banking uses interest.
What are some key principles of Islamic finance and banking, and how are they applied in practice?
following are the key principles of the Islamic banking system: –
- Profit and loss sharing
- Prohibition of interest
- Asset-based investment
How has Islamic finance and banking grown in popularity over time, and what are some current trends and developments in the field?
Despite the global financial crisis, Islamic financial assets recorded the highest growth in the global financial industry. The current trend indicates further growth in the market.
What are some potential benefits and challenges of Islamic finance and banking, both for Muslim and non-Muslim consumers and investors?
- The Islamic finance and banking system is an effective way to tackle global problems such as poverty and income inequality.
- Consumers benefit as businesses practice strong ethical and moral values.
- Income equality leads to socioeconomic justice, causing a fall in the crime rate.
- Transparency in business leads to a better understanding of risks and benefits, causing a financially stable environment.
- There is a lack of awareness about the Islamic finance and banking system and how it works.
- Financial standard-setting organizations need to cooperate to bridge the gap between conventional and Islamic financial systems.
- The lack of Shariah-compliant safety nets prohibits the complete enforcement of the Islamic finance and banking system.