The Curaçao International Financial Services Association (CIFA), Ernst and Young Tax Advisers and Amicorp Inc last week submitted a report on the possibilities of developing Islamic finance in the Netherlands Antilles to the State Secretary of Finance, Alex Rosaria.
According to the feasibility report, entitled: 'The Netherlands Antilles: A New Mecca for Islamic Financing?' there are certain immediate actions that the local financial center can take in order to accommodate Islamic financing.
However, the report clearly indicated that if the Netherlands Antilles wishes to become an important player in Islamic financing in this hemisphere, more profound changes and adaptations are needed in the country’s legal and regulatory framework.
The reason for the completion of such a study are clear, according to Rosaria:
“If we are serious about being in the top-ten international financial centers of the world, we can not, not be involved with Islamic financing,” he announced, going on to observe that the Netherlands Antilles is currently negotiating a Double Taxation Agreement with one of the most important players of Islamic financing, the United Arab Emirates.
Islamic financing refers to a system of financing or financial activity that is consistent with Islamic Law (Sharia).
Its two central tenants are that: no interest can be earned on transactions, and all investing must be done in a socially responsible way.
In the coming weeks the Government will analyze the conclusions and recommendations made in the report..
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