France has the biggest Muslim population in Europe estimated at 10 percent of the country’s 65.6 million citizens.France is working unrelentingly to make numerous legal and organizational reformations to ease the offering of Islamic financial services and products. Islamic ﬁnance appears to have good potential to develop further in France.
French authorities support Islamic financing
By Mohammed Arifeen
France has the biggest Muslim population in Europe estimated at 10 percent of the country’s 65.6 million citizens. This only exhibits a chance for the development and increase Islamic finance in France. Considering the country’s large Muslim population and growing cognizance for ethical finance, there are ample chances for France to play dynamic role in the Islamic finance industry.
France is the largest country in the European Union. European Union operates currency by the euro. It attracts over 82 million foreign tourists annually.
In France the Socialists were humiliated at this revolutionary change in the French economy. So also the conservative members of devoted party also felt the same. France seem very much content in its financing system and is not willing to adhere to alien methods of banking.
Over the past ears, various non-French licensed banks have considered applying for a banking license in France to sell Islamic products. None ever succeeded in meeting the Prudential Supervisory Authority requirements.
French academics have shown their interest to make use of Saudi expertise and experience in Islamic banking and finance.
A report by Research stated that new global markets are trying to join the principal players in the Islamic financing industry and services in France. France is working unrelentingly to make numerous legal and organizational reformations to ease the offering of Islamic financial services and products.
The report stated that there is great potential for increase in Islamic financial services in France. France desires to become a hub for Islamic banking in Europe. It mentioned that 1.5 million clients are willing to use Islamic banking tools and products.
The development of Islamic ﬁnance in France is ascribed to warm support by the French authorities, who have built a suitable and friendly environment for such ﬁnance in this country.
In December 2007, Paris EUROPLACE, the organization that promotes the city’s role as a ﬁnancial centre, established the Islamic Finance Commission. Since then, the French ﬁnancial markets regulator, the Autorité des marches ﬁnanciers (AMF), has issued two positions allowing Shari’ah compliant investment funds and sukuk listings.
The Bourse de Paris (Paris stock exchange) has created a Sukuk segment and four tax regulations (relating to murabahah, sukuk, ijarah and istisna’) have been published that conﬁrm a parity of tax treatment with conventional ﬁnancial products.