IFN Forum UK 2021

Date: 12 Oct 2021
Location: Mansion House, London



About The Forum

The Islamic finance industry’s longest running and leading European event will again be held in London, at Mansion House under the patronage of the Lord Mayor of London and fully supported by Her Majesty’s Government, TheCityUK and The City of London, among others. Quite simply, the annual IFN UK Forum is the most significant day for Islamic finance in Europe, attracting regulators and the industry elite from around the world in possibly the most historic and stunning venues available.

Now in its 13th year, the IFN UK Forum will continue to uphold itself as a pillar of exchange of information, strategy, and growth in the Islamic finance sector for the UK, Europe and beyond through unparalleled expert panel discussions, private networking and exclusive dialogue sessions.

The UK’s sophomore GBP500 million (US$709.42 million) sovereign Sukuk facility and the departure from the European Community will be key as will the enormous investment opportunities for Europe’s vast investment community in the recovery of the global economy.

An Introduction to 2021

At REDmoney, 2020 taught us much about the state of the events business. What works, what doesn’t and how to continue delivering unparalleled programs to our global audience.

It’s a fundamental element of our business going forward, and we will continue to adapt to ensure we remain relevant and our events remain the industry’s best.

The global appetite and requirements for converging has shifted and now more than ever, we are strategically planning our events to adapt to these changes in the face of disruption without compromising on the quality of knowledge transfer and outreach.

Technological advancements have given rise to exciting opportunities in developing new formats that allows unlimited real time interaction remotely.

Moving forward, we will deliver a blend of physical and online events, ensuring the best of both worlds. Physical interaction is important to many, whilst travel and time away from the office isn’t always necessary to reach new markets.

For 2021, through careful research and planning, we have curated bespoke events online and offline with your interest in mind.


9:00am Welcome

9:05am Keynote Address

9:20am Keynote Address

9:35am Re-evaluating the Value Proposition of Islamic Financial Services in the UK

Reflecting on an economic recovery and a stable EU departure, is now an opportunity for the UK Islamic financial services industry to reassess its strategy, activities, goals and global competitiveness? Should we ask how the industry has grown and developed over the past five years, how viable Islamic retail, wealth management or pension offerings can be successfully mass positioned in the UK, and how we build more confidence in such products? How do we shift perceptions of Shariah compliant finance from alternative, to complementary and supplementary? What does the second UK Sovereign Sukuk mean for the UK Islamic capital market and what does the Bank of England liquidity facility mean for UK Islamic banks? Finally, how can UK Islamic finance continue to collaborate with sustainable and responsible finance, across a wide range of activities, to the advantage of both?

10:50am Coffee

11:15am Green, Social, Transition and Sustainability-Linked Finance and Investment – Shariah Compliant Options

As host of the 26ᵗʰ UN Climate Change Conference in November, the UK has an opportunity to drive an important agenda. However, alongside ‘Transition to Net Zero’ and decarbonisation targets, what is realistically achievable and what does net zero mean for sectors such as aviation, oil and gas and other asset-based industries? How are Shariah compliant financing products and assets playing a role in this generational shift? What do green Sukuk and other products offer in relation to transition and sustainability-linked initiatives, and is a UK Sovereign Green Sukuk viable in the short term? How can the financing of Shariah compliant assets continue to contribute to the achievement of the UN SDGs and towards the Paris Accord? Lastly, does Islamic finance have more to offer sustainability-linked finance through Shariah compliant structures such as Waqf? We ask an expert panel.

12:45pm Presentation

1:00pm Luncheon

1:45pm Driving Development in UK Islamic Corporate Banking and Capital Markets

What will the second Sovereign Sukuk achieve and what does it represent for UK Islamic financial services, and UK Islamic banks in particular? What does the UK offer as a listing destination for sovereign, supranational and corporate Sukuk issuance, as well as other products such as investment trusts and ETFs? Is there an effective secondary market in the UK for Sukuk? How can Shariah compliant instruments, including Sukuk, be further applied to the funding of alternative asset classes and sustainable assets? How is technology such as blockchain shaping and influencing Islamic corporate banking and capital markets, considering notable recent innovations by GCC Islamic banks? Finally, how can global and domestic incentives, regulation and standards applicable to the issue of Shariah compliant financing products be more effectively aligned for the good of the market?

3:00pm Investors Roundtable:

UK Opportunities for Shariah Compliant Direct Real Estate and Private Equity Investment

Through a panel of international investment professionals, we explore current and potentially innovative Shariah compliant investment types and asset classes. What are the latest opportunities and demands for Shariah compliant direct investment into UK real estate market? With an active private equity market, what are potential targets for investment into the UK market and what structures are being employed? Aside from these, what new and interesting asset classes have presented themselves in the past year?

4:00pm The Evolution of UK Financial Technology

The IFN Fintech Landscape identifies 37 Islamic fintech providers in the UK, making it the world’s largest Shariah fintech centre. Considering this, how do we assess the rapid evolution of the sector? What is the value proposition and market positioning of UK Islamic fintech offerings and what can Shariah compliant challenger banks learn from their conventional counterparts? How can UK Islamic fintech fulfil its potential through offering Shariah compliant financial solutions to minorities, particularly in retail finance, pensions and wealth management? What are the potential implications of the findings of the Kalifa Report for UK Islamic fintechs, in terms of governance and growth? What is the potential for a government-sponsored fintech growth fund and how would this assist startups? What else can be done to fill the funding gap and provide the capital necessary for UK Islamic fintechs to achieve their potential? We seek the views of an expert panel.

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