Ways Nigeria's Islamic Societies Can Support the Growth of the Non-Interest Finance Market


Friday, April 23, 2021 /1:00PM / Bukola Akinyele-Yisau for WebTV / Header Image Credit: EcoGraphics

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The growing interest in Islamic Finance as an alternative source of financing for Nigeria's economic development through products like Sukuk have shown immense opportunities and prospects for driving Nigeria's economic transformation, that can address issues like poverty, unemployment, and underdevelopment.


The President of the Nasrul-lahi-li Fathi Society of Nigeria (NASFAT), Mr. Olaniyi Yusuf featured on WebTV's Islamic Finance Weekly where he spoke on the role of NASFAT in the growth of Islamic Finance in the country.


Speaking on how NASFAT intends to encourage the increased adoption of non-interest products in the retail market, Yusuf said the organization would continue to support in the areas of education and awareness.


He said the Society was in over 360 locations in Nigeria for the marketing of Sukuk and partnering with financial institutions such as Lotus Capital, Jaiz Bank, and Sterling Bank non-interest windows to talk to their members about products.


Also, the society came up with the "NASFATBUILD Initiative" meant for promoting young Muslim digital entrepreneurs with the focus on getting capital. The maiden winner Halal-vest company won a sum of $10,000, he said.


On how NASFAT plans to promote MSMEs through non-interest finance, the Society's President said, 15 years ago NASFAT started a business committee for market women to access products, and also started the cooperative society three years ago for their members to access equity or to take loans. He said the Society's cooperatives are in more than 60 locations throughout the country.


Speaking on Microfinance Banks, Yusuf said NASFAT would continue to focus on livelihood, cooperative societies, and investing in digital platforms. According to him,  investing in digital platforms would provide greater access to Halal capital than investing only in Microfinance Banks.


Commentators on Islamic societies in Nigeria have noted that such societies could support the non-interest finance market by working closely with one another, working with the Islamic banks, the regulators, and capital market operators to enlighten their members on the opportunities of investing in Islamic finance products.

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