Appendix Four – No true Islamic Finance or Economics

Nowhere at present does there exist either a true Islamic Finance or a truly modern Islamic Economy. There are only options purporting to be Islamic e.g.:

a) ‘Islamic Finance’ which is better than Western finance (because there is more focus on the real economy) but it also disguises Riba/interest by various legal forms and so is purportedly free from interest when, in reality, it is not. Moreover, it is NOT committed to spreading productive ownership to everybody.

NB. In 2006, Harvard University (USA) held a big conference attended by Islamic academics, bankers etc. The conference (entitled Integrating Islamic Finance into the Mainstream) asserted that ‘Islamic Finance’ is only another brand name for Western banking/finance (which is why Western banks have ‘Islamic windows’). Thus the Americans were claiming Western economic and financial superiority (and political and cultural superiority) and the Muslim academics at the conference were fool enough to agree.

b) The use of gold is advocated by some because it would contain inflation, discourage irresponsible lending and weaken the West’s power to put countries into never-ending debt. Nevertheless, at the same time, the use of gold would also fail to spread the real economy to every individual in society; result in an increase of rich-poor division; and NOT eliminate, or even moderate, Riba/interest.  Moreover, gold as currency is not demanded by the Prophet (Anjum, 2005. Chapra, 1996). HOWEVER, a gold-backed money supply is possible and it may become a major part of future monetary reform.

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