President: Indonesia to Become Center of Global Sharia Economy

Photo: Courtesy

Jakarta, MINA – President Joko Widodo said Indonesia continues to accelerate economic development based on Islamic law as part of its transformation into a reference center for global Islamic economics and finance.

The President said that Islamic economics and finance still have great potential to be developed, because they are not only in demand by Muslim-majority countries but also non-Muslim countries such as Japan, Thailand, and the United States.

“Indonesia, with the largest Muslim population in the world, must seize this opportunity,” said the President who is familiarly called Jokowi at the virtual opening of the Indonesia Sharia Economic Festival on Wednesday.

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President Jokowi said Indonesia already has a National Committee on Sharia Economics and Finance (KNEKS) to accelerate economic growth and Islamic finance through a grand strategy of strengthening the halal value chain in micro, small and medium enterprises and strengthening the digital economy.

He said the holding of the ISEF held by Bank Indonesia could be a momentum to create a clear and detailed road map to determine concrete steps that must be taken in developing the Islamic economy and financial industry.

“The sharia financial industry is a sleeping giant and the government has great concern to awaken this giant through the formation of a large Islamic bank,” added President Jokowi.

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He said the government is in the process of merging three state-owned Islamic banks into one large Islamic bank with total assets until the first semester of 2020 amounting to IDR 214 trillion.

In addition, the government has also developed micro waqf banks in various places in collaboration with Islamic boarding schools and religious organizations.

“We hope that the Islamic financial industry can become an alternative instrument in developing the people’s economy,” he added.

President Jokowi added that the real sector-based and labor-intensive sharia economy also has the potential to absorb jobs and open new types of businesses.

Indonesia has many superior halal products such as food, cosmetics and fashion and aspires to become the world’s largest Muslim fashion center.

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“The great potential of the halal industry has not been utilized properly, so that integrated and comprehensive development efforts must be made,” said President Jokowi.

He said that the sharia economic ecosystem must be addressed followed by efficient regulation and preparation of human resources properly.

“Indonesia, with the world’s largest Muslim population, I hope can become a center of excellence as a global sharia economic hub,” concluded the President. (T/RE1)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)