[UAE] Amlak Finance PJSC - Islamic Finance


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Amlak Finance PJSC, along with Tamweel PJSC, will be merged under Abu Dhabi's state-owned Real Estate Bank, Bloomberg reported. Talks of a merger between the two had been going on since October. An unidentified Ministry of Finance official was quoted as saying the new company will serve as the "cornerstone" of the mortgage market.

The government's involvement is a move to help restore confidence in Dubai's ailing market. From the article:

"Borrowers from Dubai have lost access to cheap international funding this year as the perceived risk of Dubai companies as measured by default swaps rose. Credit-default swap contracts covering the debt of Dubai Holding LLC, the emirate's holding company, were last quoted at 1,100 basis points on Nov. 21, according to CMA Datavision prices. That compares with 245 basis points in March. The increase signals a decline in the perception of credit quality."

Amlak had announced it would temporarily halt making any new loans on November 19th, 2008. Cited as the "biggest mortgage lender by market value," Amlak had sunk to "1.53 billion dirhams ($417 million) after its shares sank 80 percent this year" according to the Bloomberg article. Both Amlak and Tamweel specialize in Islamic finance compliant with Shariah Law.

"Islamic finance differs from conventional finance in that it is based on a profit-and-loss-sharing principle," their web site explains. "An Islamic finance does not charge interest but rather participates in the yield resulting from the use of funds. The Islamic financial provider uses the depositors' funds to invest in business projects and then these depositors share in the profits of such investment according to a predetermined ratio. There is thus a partnership between the Islamic financial provider and its depositors on one side, and between the Islamic financial provider and its investment clients on the other side."

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Important: This company is on our list of lending operations that have "imploded". However, please note that "imploded" is a somewhat subjective and does not necessarily mean operations are ceased permanently: it can mean bankruptcy filing, temporary but open-ended halting of major operations, or "firesale" acquisition. All information here is provisional, and may contain inaccuracies (especially newer information). If you are planning on doing business with this company or any other one listed on this site, you should inquire with them directly on whether they can still meet your needs. Many are still operating in some capacity.