Japan’s Mizuho Bank to Make Malaysia its Hub for Islamic Finance

Posted September 5th, 2011 at 8:15 pm (UTC-5)
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One of Japan's oldest and largest banks has announced plans to make Malaysia its global hub for Islamic finance.

Mizuho Corporate Bank opened a Malaysian branch in Kuala Lumpur Monday. Bank officials said they have applied with Malaysia's central bank for a permit to conduct Islamic finance services.

Chairman of Mizuho Malaysia Keizo Ohashi said the southeast Asian nation was chosen because it has a strong infrastructure in Islamic finance and is considered a gateway to business development in the rest of the region.

He said more than a half of the 1,400 Japanese companies operating in Malaysia are Mizuho's clients. He added that with a commercial banking license, the bank will be able to extend a full range of financial services to multinational companies seeking to expand their businesses in Malaysia.

Islamic finance is consistent with the principles of Islamic law, which prohibits imposing interest or other fees on money loans. Investing in businesses that provide goods or services and other practices considered to be contrary to Islamic principles are also forbidden.