By Islam Atrees
Minister of Finance El-Morsy Hegazy said the government had approved the new Islamic sukuk bill in principle.
The law will now go through the cabinet’s legislative committee for proper drafting before being transferred to the Shura Council for debate and approval. If approved, the council will then send the bill to Al-Azhar to ensure it conforms to Islamic Shari’a as per the constitution, Hegazy said.
In a press conference at the cabinet building Hegazy told journalists that there will be a specialised agency to issue sukuk that will ensure adherence to Islamic Shari’a and that the Islamic Development Bank was ready to inject investments worth $6 bn following the adoption of the law.
He said there were a lot of investors waiting for the new law so they could “pour investments into Egypt”.
Hegazy warned that the law was not a “magic wand that will fix the economy” and that community consensus was needed to end public polarisation. He called on political groups to calm their rhetoric because “good investment needs political stability.”
The newly appointed finance minister assured journalists that the sukuk law would not lead to private entities owning state assets, as they would possess them only temporarily and that the assets would always belong to the state. He also said that private companies would also be able to issue sukuk.
The financial oversight authority, the ministries of finance and investment, the Shura Council and all political groups had approved the law said Hegazy. He added that the comments of Al-Azhar Grand Imam Ahmed El-Tayeb had been taken into consideration.