Economic Analyst Prof Datuk Mohd Yusof Kasim said currently IBF is expanding in non-Islamic countries, and it could be improved to ensure it is truly a choice for many parties.
He said many universities in Malaysia offered courses related to IBF but they were enough to fulfill the demand in Malaysia, while there was a lot of demand for human resources at the global level.
“We are already ahead. We have complete governance and framework. In fact, many Western countries look at our sukuk as a popular Islamic bond. In the labour market, there’s a lot of demand in IBF but how ready are our universities to produce that numbers.
“Supply from universities (in Malaysia) can meet industry demand… but I feel the global demand is huge,” he said when met at a dialogue session on “The Dialogue on the Future Dimensions of IBF in Malaysia” today.
Besides that, he said the local universities must undertake more research and development (R&D) in IBF in order to meet the industry demand, locally and internationally.
“The R&D should have been done early on to identify industry needs, hence there is no issue of ‘reluctant to accept’ in the industry. I believe if we want to be effective and productive in terms of collaboration, both parties must identify the needs, and not ‘the universities do it first’, otherwise there will be a mismatch with industry needs,” he said.
He also said Malaysia as the leading country should strengthen the R&D to help tweak the weaknesses besetting the industry and improve it further.
IBF in Malaysia is now becoming more competitive and was able to attract non-Muslims to use Islamic banking products, he said.
“Non-Muslims have subscribed to IBF products. They feel the risk is very low and returns, competitive. (For Muslims) as long as competitive and Islamic, we have to support,” he said.
The two-day dialogue from today is organised by Kolej Universiti Insaniah (Kuin) to discuss the Islamic banking practices in Malaysia and other countries.
Mohd Yusof who is also a Rector at Kuin said the dialogue was held to deliberate on several aspects in the implementation of IBF including the challenges faced in Malaysia and globally, the possibility of repositioning IBF at the global level and review current practices.