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Islamic microfinance as an effective instrument to eradicate poverty and boost development
By Jonathan Agwe
The Dubai Global Islamic Microfinance Forum, held in December 2012, brought together professionals, leaders and experts working in Islamic microfinance institutions, international donor organizations and development agencies from around the world. Together, they engaged in dialogue on sustainable development and poverty alleviation achieved through Islamic microfinance.
The forum was the second international conference on this topic organized by the Al Huda Centre for Islamic Banking and Economics (CIBE) through its Centre of Excellence in Islamic Microfinance (CEIMF). The fundamental objective was to demonstrate that – in parallel with conventional microfinance – Islamic microfinance can provide support to the “unbankable” members of society.
Participants in the Dubai forum reiterated that this instrument builds on ethical, moral and social factors to promote mutual support, equality and fairness for the benefit of the society and its members.
Potential to target diverse markets
According to Islam, there are three classes of Faqeir or vulnerable groups in society: (i) those who cannot earn a living, (ii) those who are financially distressed and (iii) those who capable of earning a living but lack adequate opportunities.