Recently many books, newspaper articles and research papers have been written under the heading of “Sukuk”. In this article we will try to provide a brief explanation of the meaning of Sukuk and its presence in the global financial markets. New Sukuk issuance worldwide could once more exceed $100 billion this year (2013), according to S&P (March 2013) due to support from tight yields and innovative structures. Funding needs and large infrastructure investments in the Organization of Islamic Cooperation countries (OIC), combined with better global investor sentiment, lie behind today’s momentum in the Sukuk market. The Gulf Cooperation Council countries (GCC) and Asia will remain the key engines for growth of the Sukuk market. Growth in cross-border Islamic bond issues points to greater convergence in an industry that has been divided by tensions between the Middle East and Asia regarding Sukuk rules, opening the door to a much wider pool of investors. However, structures are still not standardised, and some Gulf-based Shariah scholars have objected to certain structures used in Asia, a region that has proven to be more flexible in its transactions.
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