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Community Specialist

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Session Topic: Unique Features of Oman Islamic Banking Regulatory Framework Speaker: Mr. Sohaib Umar, Executive manager at Ernst and Young Time and Date: Wednesday 16th of January 2013, at 12pm Mecca Time (+3GMT) The session aims to discuss: What was the rationale behind a more conservative Shari'a governance approach adopted by the Oman IBRF? What is the relevance and applicability of Oman IBRF for other markets? Is this the start of a new trend in Islamic banking worldwide or is it specific to Oman? What are the growth prospects of Islamic banking in Oman? What kind of human resource requirements does the Oman industry have, now and in the near future?
About Mr. Sohaib Umar: Sohaib has nearly two decades of industry experience - both in conventional and Islamic finance. He is currently working as Executive Manager with Ernst & Young's MENA Islamic Financial Services Advisory in Bahrain. He advises Islamic financial institutions on governance structures, strategy, operating model and internal organization. He also advises central banks and was recently engaged by the Central Bank of Oman to assist in preparing Islamic banking regulatory framework for the Oman market. Sohaib works closely with standard setting bodies such as AAOIFI. He started his career as a broker in 1994 and worked for local and multinational brokerage houses in Pakistan and Hong Kong for eight years before switching to venture capital and private equity in 2002. He joined Ernst & Young in 2009. He is MBA (finance) and CFA and also completed a one-year post graduate diploma in Islamic Banking and Insurance from Shaikh Taqi Usmani's Center for Islamic Economics, Karachi. To join the Teleconference session: - To follow this link https://trmarkets.webex.com/trmarkets/onstage/g.php?d=733508290&t=a - Once you have accessed this link it would require from you your full name, email address and the session password which is “Bahrain2013”. - Once you have logged in it will request that you put in your telephone number by that you would be required to choose your country code and then put in your in mobile number you will receive a call back on your mobile at no additional cost.
For any additional questions contact us on Islamic.finance@thomsonreuters.com
Session Topic: Unique Features of Oman Islamic Banking Regulatory Framework Speaker: Mr. Sohaib Umar, Executive manager at Ernst and Young Time and Date: Wednesday 16th of January 2013, at 12pm Mecca Time (+3GMT) The session aims to discuss: What was the rationale behind a more conservative Shari'a governance approach adopted by the Oman IBRF? What is the relevance and applicability of Oman IBRF for other markets? Is this the start of a new trend in Islamic banking worldwide or is it specific to Oman? What are the growth prospects of Islamic banking in Oman? What kind of human resource requirements does the Oman industry have, now and in the near future?
About Mr. Sohaib Umar: Sohaib has nearly two decades of industry experience - both in conventional and Islamic finance. He is currently working as Executive Manager with Ernst & Young's MENA Islamic Financial Services Advisory in Bahrain. He advises Islamic financial institutions on governance structures, strategy, operating model and internal organization. He also advises central banks and was recently engaged by the Central Bank of Oman to assist in preparing Islamic banking regulatory framework for the Oman market. Sohaib works closely with standard setting bodies such as AAOIFI. He started his career as a broker in 1994 and worked for local and multinational brokerage houses in Pakistan and Hong Kong for eight years before switching to venture capital and private equity in 2002. He joined Ernst & Young in 2009. He is MBA (finance) and CFA and also completed a one-year post graduate diploma in Islamic Banking and Insurance from Shaikh Taqi Usmani's Center for Islamic Economics, Karachi. To join the Teleconference session: - To follow this link https://trmarkets.webex.com/trmarkets/onstage/g.php?d=733508290&t=a - Once you have accessed this link it would require from you your full name, email address and the session password which is “Bahrain2013”. - Once you have logged in it will request that you put in your telephone number by that you would be required to choose your country code and then put in your in mobile number you will receive a call back on your mobile at no additional cost.
For any additional questions contact us on Islamic.finance@thomsonreuters.com
Session Topic: Unique Features of Oman Islamic Banking Regulatory Framework Speaker: Mr. Sohaib Umar, Executive manager at Ernst and Young Time and Date: Wednesday 16th of January 2013, at 12pm Mecca Time (+3GMT) The session aims to discuss: What was the rationale behind a more conservative Shari'a governance approach adopted by the Oman IBRF? What is the relevance and applicability of Oman IBRF for other markets? Is this the start of a new trend in Islamic banking worldwide or is it specific to Oman? What are the growth prospects of Islamic banking in Oman? What kind of human resource requirements does the Oman industry have, now and in the near future?
About Mr. Sohaib Umar: Sohaib has nearly two decades of industry experience - both in conventional and Islamic finance. He is currently working as Executive Manager with Ernst & Young's MENA Islamic Financial Services Advisory in Bahrain. He advises Islamic financial institutions on governance structures, strategy, operating model and internal organization. He also advises central banks and was recently engaged by the Central Bank of Oman to assist in preparing Islamic banking regulatory framework for the Oman market. Sohaib works closely with standard setting bodies such as AAOIFI. He started his career as a broker in 1994 and worked for local and multinational brokerage houses in Pakistan and Hong Kong for eight years before switching to venture capital and private equity in 2002. He joined Ernst & Young in 2009. He is MBA (finance) and CFA and also completed a one-year post graduate diploma in Islamic Banking and Insurance from Shaikh Taqi Usmani's Center for Islamic Economics, Karachi. To join the Teleconference session: - To follow this link https://trmarkets.webex.com/trmarkets/onstage/g.php?d=733508290&t=a - Once you have accessed this link it would require from you your full name, email address and the session password which is “Bahrain2013”. - Once you have logged in it will request that you put in your telephone number by that you would be required to choose your country code and then put in your in mobile number you will receive a call back on your mobile at no additional cost.
For any additional questions contact us on Islamic.finance@thomsonreuters.com Unique Features of Oman’s Islamic Banking Regulatory Framework

This week‟s focus session looked at the unique features of the Islamic Banking Regulatory Framework (IBRF) that was recently launched by the Central Bank of Oman. The discussion was facilitated by Sohaib Umar, Executive Manager, Ernst & Young.

Oman‟s recently launched IBRF has, by and large, been described as „conservative‟ by industry players and commentators. Umar offered that the framework demands alignment of Omani practices to what could be considered stricter and more „authentic‟ practices of Islamic banking. Community members focused on the following features of the framework.

The unique features of the Omani framework are mostly found in the details governing the Sharia Supervisory Board (SSB) and Islamic windows. Sharia board members can be appointed for a maximum of two three-year terms in a row. They may be re-appointed, but only following a three-year spell away. The number of sharia board memberships is also restricted – no sharia scholar may sit on two competing institutions‟ boards, meaning that they would be confined to single board membership in each sector. This would immediately eliminate any perception or suspicion of conflicts of interest.

In a bid to promote greater transparency, their remunerations are to be disclosed in the institutions‟ annual report, and all remunerations are subject to approval of shareholders. The resolutions of sharia boards must be publicly disclosed with full explanation and rationale supporting their rulings. Further, Islamic banks must maintain a full-time employee with a minimum bachelor‟s degree in sharia to manage the bank‟s internal sharia audit, and who would also work with the mandatory independent annual sharia auditors.

With regards to Islamic windows (of which Oman will have seven), clear separation lines have been drawn. Windows are to have their own branches and cannot be in the same location as conventional banks. Each window would need to keep a minimum of 10 million Omani Rials as capital. In addition, no bank employee will be allowed to sell both Islamic and conventional products.

A major standout in the framework is the prohibition on Tawarruq and Commodity Murabaha. The use of these is allowed, but only during times of emergency.

In a move to ensure capacity building, much importance is placed on training employees and empowering them with the essential skills to develop and sustain Islamic banking in Oman.

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