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Islamic finance needs regulatory change to take off in sub-Saharan Africa

By David Whitehouse
Posted on Monday, 31 May 2021 17:50

Sudanese customers queue to access money services at the Faisal Islamic Bank (Sudan) in Khartoum, Sudan June 11, 2019. REUTERS/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah

Sub-Saharan Africa needs regulatory reforms if Islamic finance is to realise its growth potential in the region, Islamic fintech hub founder Wahida Mohamed tells The Africa Report.

“It’s almost like Islamic fintech and the financially-excluded Muslim population doesn’t exist,” says Wahida, founder of the Islamic Fintech Hub of Sub Saharan Africa in Mombasa, Kenya.

Within the next 20 years, sub-Saharan Africa will overtake the Middle East and North Africa to become the region with the world’s second-largest Muslim population behind the Asia-Pacific, according to Pew Research. It is forecasted that the Muslim proportion of the population of sub-Saharan Africa will increase to 27% by 2060, from 16% in 2015.