KUALA LUMPUR: The Islamic capital market needs to be scaled up as Islamic finance has the potential to play a larger role in financing sustainable development projects globally, said Securities Commission (SC) Malaysia chairman Datuk Seri Dr Awang Adek Hussin
He said facilitative frameworks and active partnerships amongst like-minded parties would help the Islamic capital market to develop and accelerate innovation in the area of sustainability.
"Our commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals has remained steadfast. Over the past
few years, the SC introduced various key initiatives with Sustainable and Responsible Investment as a main focus,” Awang Adek said in his keynote speech at the 5th Islamic Sustainable Finance and Investment Asia Forum today.
Citing the United Nations (UN) SDG 2023 report, Awang Adek said Malaysia ranked 78th out of 193 UN member states with a total score of 69.85 per cent, which is slightly higher than the regional average of 67.2 per cent.
"Only 36.6 per cent of Malaysia’s SDG targets have been met or are on track, with the remaining 63.4 per cent showing limited progress or even worsening.
"These numbers highlight the critical issues we face and emphasise the need for continuous action,” he added.
Therefore, Awang Adek emphasised capitalising on the close alignment between shariah principles and sustainability.
"In the Islamic finance space, we are seeing an increase in the availability of sustainability-related products.
"This includes the introduction of environmental, social, and corporate governance-shariah indices and funds, the establishment of the world’s first Islamic voluntary carbon market, and a surge in the issuances of sustainability-related sukuk,” he said. - Bernama