Towards a Plural Financial System
Edited by Valentino Cattelan
Despite a potential market for Islamic financial products in Germany, as recently documented by Farhoush and Schmidt (2011), little progress has been made until now in the national Shari‘ah compliant marketplace. This lack in improvement seems to contrast with the favour towards Islamic finance expressed by the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin), whose ‘officials, including its president Mr Jochen Sanio, repeatedly signalled their willingness to support Islamic banking’ (Schönenbach, 2011). At the same time, in order to understand the lack of progress in the German Islamic finance market, we have to consider the overall institutional attitudes towards Islamic finance along with the attitudes within the Muslim population. Are German institutions overly inflexible towards new products or paradigms? Are such products allowed or profitable under existing German laws and regulations? How do legal constraints effect the introduction of new products?
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