Chapter 2 concerns southwest Asia. It analyses the Arabian Gulf / Gulf of Oman Convention, and the Red Sea / Gulf of Aden Convention, together with the numerous detailed protocols elaborated there-under. The objective of both is the conservation of the Arabian Gulf and Gulf of Oman, and Red Sea and Gulf of Aden environment respectively, including the prevention, abatement and combating of marine pollution. Each contains general and specific obligations, including the prevention of pollution from ships, dumping, and from land-based sources; from exploration and exploitation; and other human activities. Each furthermore contain obligations to conduct environmental impact assessment (EIA), and for liability and compensation. The provisions are compared and analysed with respect to the research questions outlined in Chapter 1 in an effort to evaluate their effectiveness. The role of China in connection with each regime is finally analysed and conclusions are drawn. Keywords: Gulfs - Arabian, Oman, Aden - Red Sea
Chapter 4 is focused on southeast Asia. It explains and analyses the Mekong Agreement. This is focused on cooperation in relation to sustainable development, utilization, management and conservation of the water and related resources to optimize the multiple-use and mutual benefits of all riparians, and to minimize harmful effects. Obligations on the Mekong River Commission (MRC) discussed include creating a Basin Plan, and on Parties to notify and consult in relation to development, principally dam-building. Chapter 4 also explains and analyses the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) Conservation Agreement and related Centre for Biodiversity Agreement. The first contains many broad environmental objectives and obligations, as well as specific provisions on conserving genetic diversity, endangered and endemic species, vegetation cover and forest resources, soil, water and air. EIA, advance notification, and appropriate consultation should all be undertaken prior to any proposed utilisation of the shared resources. Chapter 4 finally evaluates the Haze Pollution Agreement. This aims to prevent, monitor and mitigate negative transboundary effects arising from land and forest fires through national efforts and international cooperation. Measures to control the sources of fires; develop monitoring, assessment and early warning systems; exchange information and technology; and provide mutual assistance, are all included, and outlined in the chapter. The provisions are again compared and analysed with respect to the research questions set out in Chapter 1 in an effort to evaluate their effectiveness. The role of China in connection with each regime is furthermore analysed and conclusions are drawn. Keywords: ASEAN, MRC, Mekong, Conservation, Haze Pollution
Chapter 5 looks to south and east Asia. It considers the environmental governance currently in place in south Asia, in particular as supported by the South Asian Cooperative Environment Program (SACEP) and the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). The latter has produced three relevant agreements: the Environmental Cooperation Convention, the Rapid Response to Natural Disasters Agreement, and the Energy Cooperation (Electricity) Agreement. These are all considered along with the Indus Waters Treaty, climate change arrangements, Malé Declaration on air pollution, and the Regional Seas Programme for the South Asian Seas. Significantly Chapter 5 also evaluates the SAARC and SACEP institutional arrangements that operate independently of the agreements promulgated, which may form the basis for any Third Pole regime. In east Asia, it furthermore analyses the Tumen Agreements, the aim of which is to attain environmentally sound and sustainable development of northeast Asia and the Tumen River Economic Development Area. Obligations are also present for EIA and environmental management plans, which are fully analysed. Chapter 5 also examines the informal arrangements for air pollution in northeast Asia, and the Regional Seas Programme for East Asia. Significantly, Chapter 5 analyses the prospects for establishing an additional environmental regime for the Third Pole, and China’s potential role in relation to this. This is based on the conclusions from each of the preceding chapters and in the context of the particular environmental issues and geopolitics of this subregion. While most of the regimes in the subregions discussed in Chapters 2-5 are based on formal agreements, and the majority have been adopted, (and in many instances ratified and applied with some - albeit limited - success), the governance of the Third Pole is yet to be conceived, fully proposed and evaluated. Finally, Chapter 5 answers the remaining central research questions not addressed in the previous chapters, summarises findings, and emphasises likely challenges. These include - despite the significance and necessity of engaging China (and other key states) in environmental regimes, and particularly in the Third Pole subregion - that a reluctance to cede national sovereignty to international law-making may impede progress. Research directions going forward are elaborated at the end of Chapter 5, which include considering multilateral, regional and subregional agreements in other parts of the world, and the significance of institutional support in any legal transplant. Keywords: SAARC, SACEP, Tumen, China, Third Pole
Chapter 1 introduces the book, sets out the scope and aims, and outlines the research questions and methodology. A common framework for analysing each of the regimes is explained and justified, with reference to the scholarship of international law, international political economy and global politics. Chapter 1 also outlines and distinguishes between regions and subregions in Asia, and discusses environmental regimes in the literatures. It considers the geography of Asia as a region and the environmental issues it faces, examining the numerous international and regional institutions that operate there. It also reviews the discourse and scholarship in connection with regions and subregions developed by these institutions and by academic commentators, with a focus on the development of further institutions to respond to the needs identified. The notion and practicality of regime effectiveness is also considered. Keywords: Asia, subregions, environment, regime, effectiveness
Chapter 3 examines central Asia. It first evaluates the Caspian Sea Convention. The objective of this is to protect the Caspian environment from all sources of pollution including the protection, preservation, restoration and sustainable and rational use of the biological resources. It contains guiding principles and obligations such as EIA. It also evaluates the water resource arrangements for the Aral Sea: primarily the Joint Management and Conservation of Interstate Water Resources Agreement, the International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea Agreement, and the Interstate Commission for Water Coordination Statute. Chapter 3 furthermore considers the Environmental Protection for Sustainable Development Convention. The purpose of this last treaty is to ensure the effective environmental protection and improvement of the environment across central Asia, including the rational use of natural resources, and to reduce and prevent transboundary environmental damage through the harmonization and coordination. Principles and provisions for specific environmental media are included, together with cooperation, access to information and public participation. The provisions of each are again (where possible) compared and analysed with respect to the research questions outlined in Chapter 1 in an effort to evaluate their effectiveness. The role of China in connection with each regime is again also analysed and conclusions are drawn. Keywords: Caspian Sea, Aral Sea, Sustainable Development
AbdelKader O. el Alaoui, Ginanjar Dewandaru, Obiyathulla Bacha and Mansur Masih
This study attempts to investigate the relationships at different timescales between the Dow Jones Islamic European stock return and select continental/global Islamic and conventional stock returns and LIBOR. Both discrete and continuous wavelet techniques are used to unveil timescale relationships. The relationships between different stock indices (Dow Jones Islamic Asia, Dow Jones Islamic US, Dow Jones Conventional US and Dow Jones Islamic World, LIBOR) show evidence of multi-scale tendency. Moreover, Islamic stock returns appear to be strongly correlated with LIBOR, especially during its abrupt change. Finally, the Dow Jones Islamic stock indices appear to be impacted by the financial crisis in terms of contagion in volatility with implications for portfolio diversification. The results are plausible and intuitive and have strong policy implications.
Chaker Aloui, M. Kabir Hassan and Hela Ben Hamida
The main purpose of this chapter is to assess risk for shariah-compliant stocks in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries using the value-at-risk (VaR) and expected shortfall (ES) under Basel II Accord rules. Empirically, we conduct our forecasting analysis using the asymmetric power ARCH (APARCH) model under three return innovations’ distributions: normal, Student and skewed Student. Using daily data for Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman and United Arab Emirates (July 2010–13), our results indicate that the APARCH model under skewed Student distribution out-performs the competing models and it sufficiently accounts for asymmetry and heavy tails in the shariah returns. Furthermore, this model provides more accurate VaRs and ES for both short and long positions. Finally, the APARCH model provides the lowest number of violations under the Basel II rules, given a risk exposure at the 99 per cent confidence level for all four shariah indexes. Our findings are useful for shariah market risks, Islamic hedge funds, policy regulations and for designing hedging strategies for shariah portfolios.
Roslina Mohamad Shafi, Sharifah Raihan Syed Mohd Zain, Mohamed Eskandar Shah Mohd Rasid and Ahamed Kameel Mydin Meera
Companies are exposed to business and financial risk and are affected by business cycles and economic downturns. A company is fortunate if it is capable of preventing and alleviating financial crises by utilizing existing financial distress models to deal with volatile markets and changes in the global economy. Such models are capable of signalling to a company worst case scenarios and remedial possibilities to prevent future distress. However, applying such risk models to sukuk-issuing companies remains a point of contention because sukuk and related bonds are fundamentally different types of financial instruments and possess dissimilar risk exposure to traditional instruments. The current study examines this difference by testing existing financial distress prediction models on sukuk-issuing companies. The results show that the Altman and Ohlson financial distress models were capable of alerting companies of possible financial distress with a 52.78 per cent prediction accuracy. Further testing revealed that the Ohlson model produced a higher prediction power than the Altman model for Malaysian sukuk-issuing companies. These signify that logit model is more powerful for sukuk issuing companies.
Yunieta A. Nainggolan, Janice C.Y. How and Peter Verhoeven
This chapter examines the compliance and performance of an international sample of faith-based ethical funds which screen their investment not only on risk and return but also on compliance with Islamic law – Islamic equity funds (IEFs). Using a set of stringent shariah screens similar to those of Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) Islamic Index, we find less than one-third of the equity holdings of IEFs are shariah compliant. While most of the fund holdings pass the business screens, only about 38 per cent pass the total debt to total assets ratio screen. This finding suggests that, in order to overcome a significant reduction in the investment opportunity, shariah principles are compromised, with IEFs adopting lax screening rules in an attempt to achieve financial performance. Our matched firm approach shows that shariah screening reduces investment performance by an average of 0.04 per cent per month if benchmarked against matched conventional funds – this is a relatively small price to pay for religious faith. Cross-sectional regressions show an inverse relationship between shariah compliance and fund performance: every 1 percentage point increase in total compliance decreases fund performance by 0.01 per cent per month. However, shariah compliance fails to explain relative performance of the funds when matched with conventional funds.