Anatoly Aksakov: Experiment on Introduction of Islamic Banking in Russia Should Remain Open-ended

17 May

Anatoly Aksakov, Chairman of the State Duma Committee on Financial Market, stated that there are currently no plans to amend the law on Islamic banking, which was adopted in 2023. Speaking at the press conference "Partnership Financing in Russia: New Experience, First Assessments" as part of the XV International Forum "Russia - Islamic World: KazanForum," Aksakov emphasized the importance of maintaining the law without amendments for the time being.


"We are accumulating experience and gathering proposals on what needs to be done. During today's session, issues mostly related to the activities of the Central Bank and the government were raised. This implies the need for bylaws to enhance the operations of organizations utilizing Islamic instruments," Aksakov explained.


He mentioned that proposals are currently being collected, particularly regarding standards, and legislative changes are unnecessary to implement these initiatives.


"It is proposed to develop such standards under the auspices of the Association of Banks of Russia, which I oversee. Sber and Ak Bars Bank, already involved in Islamic instruments, can contribute their accumulated experience. I suggest that other non-banking organizations join the association on preferential terms to share their proposals and participate in standard development. Subsequently, an organizing committee will be formed to assess how well each proposal aligns with the principles of Islamic finance," Aksakov elaborated.


Regarding the expansion of the experiment to introduce partnership banking, initially launched in 2023 in Tatarstan, Bashkortostan, Dagestan, and the Chechen Republic, Aksakov indicated no official plans yet. However, there are initiatives to increase participation, as expressed by the head of Ingushetia.


"Ingushetia and Chechnya share close relations, including familial ties, and the Chechen Republic is already part of the experiment. As a representative of Chuvashia, I closely interact with local businesses and authorities, who also express interest in adopting this tool for various projects," Aksakov noted.


He emphasized the importance of demonstrating positive results from the initial four participating regions, particularly Tatarstan, as a signal to expand the experiment nationwide. Additionally, Aksakov stressed the need to remove the two-year time limit on implementation to allow indefinite and widespread use of Islamic finance.


Madina Tukulova, head of the hub for Islamic finance and business at the Astana International Financial Center (Kazakhstan), emphasized that Islamic finance is accessible to all users, regardless of religion, highlighting its role as an alternative financial tool.



GSV "Russia - Islamic World"

Photo: RIA Novosti

Based on materials from the KazanForum Press Service