I am currently working with one of the biggest investment houses in Malaysia. Being assigned the role of an investment strategist in the company has given me opportunities to help shape and develop Malaysia’s financial sector through investment, particularly in the Islamic Finance capacity, which is a dream come true for me.
I have always aspired to help establish a dominant Islamic Financial Sector in Malaysia; this being the greatest opportunity for me to contribute to Islam.
This dream is mostly rooted in my continuous involvement in usrah under PAS and engagement with the PAS top leadership.
PAS has always reminded me that as a Muslim and a PAS member, I should base everything I do in life on Islam, so as to ensure that every single act in my life will be counted as ‘Ibadah. Hence, in my current capacity, I have decided to develop the Islamic Finance sector in Malaysia as my jihad for Islam.
As a matter of fact, the listed equity market in Malaysia, particularly in the financial sector, is currently occupied by circa RM17 billion in Islamic Equities, as opposed to circa RM467 billion of Islamic Securities demand from GLICs. This leaves us with a pretty big hole to fill. In fact, the lower dividends gained from EPF’s Simpanan Shariah as compared to EPF’s Simpanan Konvensional were actually due to a lower contribution from the financial sector.
The first step taken by the PAS led Kelantan state government when it first came to power, was to support the Islamic Financial Sector. It was made compulsory for the state government to only use Bank Islam in each and every financial transaction, which no state has ever done before.
This effort, on top of Dokumen Hijau offered by PAS, has convinced me that only PAS is seen to be serious enough to bring Islamic Finance to another level, and hopefully even to surpass conventional finance, in terms of size, attractive offering etc.
Will you join me in creating a better Malaysia?
Mr Shahrir Muhamad is a licensed fund manager in one of the biggest investment institution in Malaysia. He is committed to create a better Malaysia.