As the global financial market continues to face speculation and catastrophes, a new investment model is gaining popularity in Asia – Islamic Banking. The world’s highest concentration of Muslims is in Southeast Asia, with Indonesia alone having 240 million believers, making it the most populous Islamic country in the world. The southeast Asian version of Islam is far more liberal than its counterpart in the Arab states, with a robust growth of the religion-based Islamic Banking concept – something that Western banks could only dream of.
Islamic Banking follows the basics of the system that forbid interest charges, require that money only be invested in tangible goods, and proscribe dealings in industries related to pork products, weapons, gambling or pornography. Women taking leading positions at banks and many of them scholars of law or university professors, is as self-evident nowadays as the Islamic concept of welfare – support for the disadvantaged in the form of interest-free loans, not handouts. However, the documentary also explores the skepticism surrounding this emerging financial model, with some arguing for a return to an investment model consisting of goats and gold, like Iqubal Muhaimin suggests. Join us as we discover the people who are shaping Asia’s booming economies and the controversy surrounding Islamic Banking.