A global Islamic finance pioneer
Bahrain is recognized as the global leader in Islamic finance, ranking 1st in MENA and 2nd globally for Islamic finance development (ICD 2019). We set the benchmark early for Islamic banking regulation by establishing the Bahrain Islamic Bank in 1978, and have nurtured the concepts, rules, and standards of Shari’a banking compliance in Islamic banks ever since. In this way, we are able to cater to the needs of both mainstream Islamic finance and the new breed of FinTech entrepreneurs who offer Shari’a-compliant products. Our continued focus on innovation and customer service has made Bahrain a top destination for Islamic finance development.
An unrivalled knowledge hub
Bahrain has the highest concentration of Islamic finance institutions in the region: 15 wholesale Islamic banks and 6 retail Islamic banks. A highly connected ecosystem, our expertise spans every area of Islamic financing, from asset management and Sukuk issuance to Shari’a-compliant insurance and reinsurance.
A growing Takaful industry
Bahrain, currently home to 6 Takaful firms and 2 Retakaful firms, is the ideal jurisdiction for the industry. The Central Bank of Bahrain has also implemented the new Takaful model which enhances solvency status assessment of these firms.
Largest Islamic finance market in the region
Total Islamic banking assets held in Bahrain stood at USD 27.8bn in 2018, making it one of the region’s largest Islamic finance and banking markets.
An innovative government
The Central Bank of Bahrain is continuously implementing new initiatives and policy tools to further develop Bahrain’s standing in Islamic finance, most recently: a new Takaful model and a new Shari’a-compliant Wakalah investment tool.
Bahrain is home to the region’s largest concentration of Islamic finance institutions that deal in almost every area of Islamic finance and Islamic products. We are proud to rank 1st in MENA and 2nd across the global for Islamic finance development, per the ICD Islamic Finance Development Report 2019.
“When you want to create a bank, first of all you have to think about the law, the regulator, the staff, if the country is open and if I can transfer my profits. All these things are in Bahrain.”
Download additional materials on Bahrain’s Islamic finance sector to read at your own convenience. Learn more about Bahrain’s important role in the Islamic financing world, our Shari’a-compliant investment policies, and our interest in helping existing and future businesses grow.
Financial Services in Bahrain
A compelling case for financial institutions to establish a regional base in Bahrain. Join a thriving centre excellence.
Islamic Finance Development Index
Bahrain Islamic Bank continues to lead the way in Islamic finance and Shari’a-compliant investment opportunities.