Leveraging on Islamic Finance for Sustainability, Innovation and Economic Development

In the last decades, the Islamic Financial Services Industry (IFSI) has been witnessing an increased growth doubling in size almost every 5 years. This growth trend has attracted the interest of many global players from traditional and non-traditional Islamic finance markets, being at the forefront for introducing and developing Islamic financial services in their markets. The Mediterranean region is seen as a well-positioned market to take the opportunity and gain the momentum of this global trend.

Islamic finance, with its primary objective being the promotion of economic prosperity and human welfare, may play a vital role for further economic development and fostering prosperity in the Mediterranean and African region. With both its values and modalities aligned well with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), Islamic finance represents a clear opportunity to help achieving sustainability and enhancing responsible practices within the financial sector.

As a system, Islamic finance helps to stimulate economic activity and entrepreneurship towards addressing poverty and inequality, ensuring financial and social stability and promoting comprehensive human development and fairness. Innovative Islamic financial instruments, such as Sukuk and green Sukuk, represent great tools to mobilise resources to finance infrastructure, thus addressing, for example, water and sanitation projects, sustainable and affordable energy and resilient infrastructure.

The 5th Mediterranean Islamic Finance Forum, to be held in Barcelona, will be hosting a large audience of industry leaders seeking to take advantage of the high-growth prospects of Islamic finance across the Mediterranean, Europe, Middle East and Africa and discuss key topics to address the main challenges for the effective adoption of Islamic finance within the region. The Forum will offer a unique networking opportunity for regulators, industry practitioners, business leaders and Shariah scholars to share their views and experience and will focus on some of the more contemporary areas, regionally as well as globally.


21st November 2019


Co-organised with:


9:00 – 9:15


9:15 – 10:30

Daurat Room

Official Opening of the Second Day of MedaWeek Barcelona 2019 and the Mediterranean Islamic Finance Forum

In this 5th Edition, the Mediterranean Islamic Finance Forum will examine how can Islamic Finance can be an opportunity for the Mediterranean countries. The Forum will offer a perfect networking platform for regulators, industry practitioners, business leaders and Shariah scholars to share their views and experience. This is a unique gathering in the city of Barcelona about Islamic Finance and Banking with a direct focus on the Mediterranean region.
Anwar Zibaoui

General Coordinator, ASCAME & MedaWeek Barcelona

Joan Canadell

President, Barcelona Chamber of Commerce

Ahmed M. El Wakil

President, ASCAME

Salaheddine Mezouar

President, COP22

Aziz Rabbah

Minister of Energy, Mines and Sustainable Development, Government of Morocco

Damià Calvet i Valera

Minister of Territory and Sustainability, Government of Catalonia

Keynote Speech

Mustapha Bakkoury

President, Moroccan Agency For Sustainable Energy (Masen)

10:30 – 11:00

Coffee Break

11:00 – 11:30

Ple Room

In-Conversation:Global Alliances and Initiatives for the Promotion of Sustainable Development

Dr. Marcos Eguiguren

Executive Director, Global Alliance for Banking on Values

11:30 – 12:40

Ple Room

Session 1: Sustainability and Responsible Financing: A Gateway for Islamic Finance Integration in the Mediterranean Region

Islamic finance stands out from traditional Western finance by integrating principles of sustainability and social responsibility.

Seeking to develop in the Mediterranean region, the sector highlights its ethical and responsible financing, which allows it to participate in the development of the Mediterranean region through its inclusiveness. The implementation of this non-traditional finance requires a specific application to fully benefit from the region’s opportunities.

  • Sustainability within the Mediterranean Region: Current Sustainable Practices in the Financial Sector
  • Islamic Finance as an Ethical & Responsible Mode of Financing: Potential for Sustainability Attainment & Economic Development
  • Steps for an Effective Adoption of Islamic Finance in the Region: Main Challenges, Key Drivers & Main Actors for Change
  • How to fully utilize the potential of the region to be a global player in Islamic finance?
Iyad Asali

General Manager, Islamic International Arab Bank

Gonzalo Rodríguez

General Coordinator, Saudi-Spanish Center for Islamic Economics and Finance (SCIEF)

Dr. Serkan Yüksel

Director of Department İstanbul Finance Center, Presidency of the Republic of Turkey

Mª Teresa Rodríguez Arias

International Affairs Department Officer, National Securities Market Commission (CNMV)

Hassen Ben Doua

Head of Division, Central Bank of Tunisia

12:40 – 13:50

Ple Room

Session 2: Tools for Effective Islamic Finance Adoption: The Potential for Sukuk, Takaful, and Innovation

To successfully integrate Islamic finance, three essential tools are at the disposal of financial institutions. These three tools, Sukuk, Takaful and Fintech, will be explained to understand their specificities, opportunities and examples of implementation.
    • Sukuk, a Globally Used Tool: What Role to Play in the Mediterranean Region and Ways for Effective Implementation?
    • Is Takaful an Opportunity for the Region? Specifications, Obstacles & Global Examples
    • Disruptive Technologies in Action: Fintech & Innovative Solutions for Increased Financial Inclusion
Henry MacNevin

Associate Managing Director Banking EMEA, Moody's Investors Service

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ahcene Lahsasna

Chief Executive Officer, Salihin Shariah Advisory Services Sdn Bhd

Mohammed Kateeb

Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Path Solutions

Dr. Tarık Akın

Division Director, Finance Office, Presidency of the Republic of Turkey

Dr. Ronald Rulindo

Director of Product Innovation, Market Deepening & Financial System Infrastructure Development, National Sharia Finance Committee

Javier Aguilar Guindulain

Chief Executive Officier & Founder, King-eClient

13:50 – 14:00

Conclusions, Closing remarks & Business networking

14:00 – 15:00

Lunch Break & Networking

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