Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny has outlined Islamic finance and the green economy as two areas of growth for the Irish Funds' Industry. Speaking at the Irish Funds Industry Association (IFIA) conference, Mr Kenny said there was a need to ensure that Ireland is the obvious and first choice for the domiciling and distribution of funds.
Mr Kenny said that Ireland was determined to ensure that the IFSC is a Centre of Excellence for Islamic Finance and that changes in recent Finance Acts will support its development. Ireland has been active in concluding double taxation agreements with important Islamic States, including recently Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait and the UAE.
"The Central Bank of Ireland has also said that it is open to the establishment of Islamic Finance institutions in Ireland and it has already authorised a number of Sharia compliant funds. Islamic Finance is one of the major growth areas in international finance and the Government is playing its role to support the development of this sector in Ireland," stressed Mr Kenny.
On the green economy, Mr Kenny highlighted the potential for growth for the Irish funds industry and for Ireland more generally. "The global economy is transitioning towards a low-carbon, more sustainable model - and this means investment. The recent changes in German energy policy are just the latest example of the types of opportunities that exist for funds and companies operating in the green space. $650bn is what the global clean-tech industry is expected to be worth in 2030 and we want to be at the centre of the financing industry supporting that industry," said Mr Kenny.
Mr Kenny said the Irish Government was actively looking at establishing a ‘Green’ financial services centre to provide the types of financial services that will experience significant growth in the coming years.
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