April 11, 2018 / 4:09 AM / 3 months ago

Pakistan regulator to adopt 7 new Islamic finance standards

(Reuters) - Pakistan’s capital market regulator will introduce seven new standards covering a variety of Islamic finance transactions, as it fast-tracks the adoption of rules to help streamline industry practices.

The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) said it had opened a two-week public consultation period for the standards, which are to be issued by the Accounting and Auditing Organisation for Islamic Financial Institutions (AAOIFI).

The sharia standards cover areas including indices, liquidity tools, capital protection and agency agreements, and follow three other AAOIFI standards adopted in February.

The SECP published governance rules last month to cover sharia-compliant companies and securities, and it has also amended rules governing the issuance of Islamic bonds, or sukuk.

The sukuk funding format is attracting a wider number of issuers, such as Agha Steel Industries, which is planning to tap the market to raise 5 billion rupees ($43.3 million).

Javedan Corporation plans to sell sukuk worth 3 billion rupees for a middle-income housing project, and Pakistan Services Ltd intends to issue sukuk worth 7 billion rupees to finance construction of a hotel in the city of Mirpur.

($1 = 115.5600 Pakistani rupees)

Reporting by Bernardo Vizcaino; Editing by Eric Meijer

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