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Singapore sees role for sukuk in infrastructure financing: MAS
SUKUK financing is ideal for infrastructure projects and will complement ongoing work by Singapore to enhance the bankability of infrastructure projects in the region, a Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) official said Wednesday morning.
Singapore's central bank is also working with the Islamic finance industry and other government agencies to provide clarity and certainty in the regulatory and tax treatment for financing structures that are Shariah compliant, MAS deputy managing director Jacqueline Loh said in a speech at the World Islamic Banking Conference Asia Summit in Singapore. Industry players have suggested pre-approved standardised templates that could speed up issuance of common sukuk structures, for example.
Ms Loh noted that MAS has offered S$600 million under its sukuk facility since the programme was established in 2009. The programme provides banks with regulatory assets that can facilitate the banks' own Islamic finance activities.
Infrastructure in South-east Asia will need about US$60 billion of financing per year until 2022, Ms Loh said, citing a study by KPMG. MAS plans to continue to strengthen Singapore's Islamic finance regime and capabilities to support opportunities between Asia and the Middle East.