IFA 

CISI promotes Islamic finance qualification

CISI promotes Islamic finance qualification

The Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment (CISI) and the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) have joined forces with a tri-lingual Islamic finance qualification.

The global professional bodies, which have a combined total of 756,000 members and students, have agreed to work together to promote the CISI Islamic Finance Qualification (IFQ).

This comes after the CISI, which represents those working in the wealth management, financial planning and capital markets professions, launched the IFQ in 2007.

Since then almost 3,950 exams have been sat globally.

Simon Culhane, chartered FCSI and chief executive of the CISI, said: "We are delighted to be working with ACCA on further developing the promotion of the IFQ, which covers finance from both a technical and Shariah perspective.

"Since its launch the IFQ has been taken in over 50 countries and we are looking forward to collaborating with ACCA to increase the market for this industry leading qualification which prepares candidates to hold key positions in the Islamic finance and takaful (Islamic insurance) professions."

The IFQ, which is a level three certificate, is available worldwide and both the exam and workbook are produced in English, Arabic and French.

It is suitable for existing and new employees and those seeking a career in Islamic finance.

This comes as statistics by City UK found that the UK is the top western centre for Islamic Finance and the global market for Islamic financial services increased by 12 per cent in 2014 to $2 trillion (£1.58 trillion).

The market is expected to top $3 trillion (£2.37 trillion) this year.

Helen Brand, chief executive of the ACCA, said: "Islamic finance is recognised as a vital and thriving market which will continue to grow on the global stage.

"This qualification has immense relevance, offers technical and also Shariah law perspectives, and importantly it has been developed by experts."

The news was welcomed by AJ Somal, a certified financial planner at Birmingham-based Aurora Financial Planning.

Mr Somal said: "This is an interesting development, as we have experienced a rising demand for Islamic finance from our clients, and this development will help improve Islamic finance within the UK and the advice industry in general."

aamina.zafar@ft.com