Published: Monday, 25 August, 2008, 01:26 AM Doha Time
JAKARTA: Batasa Capital, Indonesia’s sole exclusively Shariah-compliant mutual fund, aims to nearly double its assets under management by the end of the year, forecasting an explosion in demand with the government making efforts to develop the domestic Islamic market.
The world’s most populous Muslim nation has been left behind in the global rush to develop products and markets that comply with Islamic law but the last few months have seen parliament pass banking and government Islamic bond laws that should kickstart the sector.
“Our target is that by at least the end of this year we can manage IDR1tn in all of our products,” Ricky Dahlan, president director of Batasa Capital, told Dow Jones Newswires in a recent interview.
Batasa now manages about 600bn rupiah in four rupiah-denominated funds that invest in local stocks and bonds.
Shariah funds differ from conventional funds in that they don’t invest in any instruments that violate Islamic laws. They thus exclude stocks of companies that are involved with pork or alcohol and banks that earn income from interest, which is deemed to be usury.
Further down the line, Batasa wants to set up foreign-currency funds and create special funds to channel funds to local businesses, Dahlan said, adding it may take a few years because the local market isn’t developed enough to support such products.
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