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IFC’s Sukuk Receives EMEA Finance’s Most Innovative Islamic Bond Deal Award

In Washington, D.C.:
Alexandra Klopfer

Phone: (202) 473-4645


Washington, D.C., April 23, 2010—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today announced it received the EMEA Finance Most Innovative Islamic Bond Deal award for its groundbreaking $100 million Hilal Sukuk (Islamic investment certificates). On October 21, 2009, IFC became the first non-Islamic financial institution to issue a Sukuk for term funding in the Middle East.

“IFC is very proud to receive this award. It is a recognition of our efforts to strengthen the region’s nascent Sukuk market, integrate regional markets into the global economy, and support Islamic investors who want to have a positive social impact,” said Lars Thunell, IFC Executive Vice President and CEO.

The EMEA Finance magazine is the only journal focusing on corporate finance news in emerging markets in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. EMEA Finance Achievement Awards recognize the best corporate transactions in these markets each year.

Nina Shapiro, IFC Vice President for Finance and Treasurer, who will accept the award at the EMEA Finance Annual Awards Charity Dinner on June 9, said, “We are delighted by this award, and we appreciate the collaboration with the Shariah scholars, our partners at the Dubai and Bahrain exchanges, and the banks that worked with us on this complex process.”

Islamic finance adheres to Islamic law, known as Shariah. Its most basic features include a requirement that investor and borrower share in the risk of a venture, and a prohibition on charging interest. Shariah also prohibits investment in activities such as gambling or selling alcohol.

Sukuks are investment certificates with undivided ownership share in underlying Shariah-compliant assets. The IFC Sukuk supports a pipeline of IFC Islamic finance projects in key sectors such as health, education, and infrastructure. A separate special purpose vehicle issued the IFC Sukuk and warehouses the underlying assets. HSBC Amanah, Dubai Islamic Bank, Kuwait Finance House Bahrain, and Liquidity Management House were the lead arrangers.  

The Aaa-rated IFC Sukuk is a dollar-denominated $100 million non-amortizing issue with a five-year maturity. It follows the most common structure for Sukuks so that it can set a precedent for similar investments.

In early 2008, IFC formed an Islamic Finance Working Group that aims to develop a more strategic approach to Islamic finance activities. The efforts of the working group and the expansion of IFC’s field offices in the Middle East and North Africa region have contributed to a committed portfolio of over $190 million in loans and equity in the region. IFC now has the capacity to support an ongoing program of Islamic finance projects, which will underpin Sukuks every one to two years.

About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development, mobilizing capital for private enterprise, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments totaled $14.5 billion in fiscal 2009, helping channel capital into developing countries during the financial crisis. For more information, visit

About EMEA Finance

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