UK and Turkey build partnership on Islamic FinTech

Industry leaders from the UK and Turkey met in Istanbul at the UK Turkey Islamic FinTech Forum to discuss how to progress the opportunities presented by the rapid development of Islamic FinTech.

Hosted by The British Consulate-General in Istanbul, TheCityUK and Borsa İstanbul have convened a cross-national forum on FinTech and Islamic finance to share insights and expertise from the UK – a world leading FinTech hub – to help grow Turkey’s Islamic finance sector and encourage further trade and investment between the two countries.

Wayne Evans, Advisor, International Strategy, TheCityUK, said,

Islamic FinTech is expanding at a rapid pace in the UK, drawing strength from the country’s position as the number one Western centre for Islamic finance and a leading global centre for FinTech. UK-based Islamic FinTechs are already supporting Turkey’s fast growing participation banking sector – this forum can help further deepen this relationship, connecting more innovative FinTechs and helping to identify next steps for UK/Turkey Islamic finance cooperation.”

Dr Recep Bildik, Business Development Director, Borsa İstanbul, said,

The Islamic finance sector is a rapidly expanding part of the global financial system. Currently, Sharia compliant assets make up just 1% of global financial assets, yet around one in four of the world’s population is Muslim. There is clearly enormous potential for further growth. We, as Borsa İstanbul are devoted to the development of the Islamic Financial Sector, especially for the Capital Markets. Therefore we trust this event to be beneficial for all the participants and we hope that this Forum will have a fruitful outcome."

Nicholas Cannon, Head, Economic & Prosperity Team, British Consulate Istanbul, said,

The British Government is proud to support this UK-Turkey Islamic Fintech Forum, in collaboration with TheCityUK and Borsa İstanbul. The UK financial services sector is already well represented in Turkey. Turkish companies have an increasingly strong presence in the United Kingdom. This gives us a solid platform to explore together new fields for joint working through these initiatives.”

Confirmed speakers at the event include:

  • Abdul Basit, Co-founder, Elipses
  • Recep Bildik, Director, Business Development, Borsa İstanbul
  • Nicholas Cannon, Head, Economic & Prosperity Team, British Consulate Istanbul
  • Harris Irfan, Chairman, UK Islamic FinTech Panel and Founder, Ie5
  • Elçin Karatay, Managing Partner, Solak & Partners
  • Ciaran McCale, Head of Communications, Arabesque
  • Lawrence Oliver, Director, DDCAP
  • Lawrence Wintermeyer, Co-Founder, Elipses and Global Digital Finance
  • Zeeshan Uppal, Co-founder, Yielders

Today’s UK Turkey Islamic FinTech Forum is part of an ongoing partnership between TheCityUK and Borsa İstanbul looking at the development of Fintech and opportunities for co-operation between the two countries. Yesterday, Borsa İstanbul hosted the second successful Islamic FinTech working group and TheCityUK will be hosting another meeting in London early next year.

The forum is supported by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office Prosperity Fund, which aims to remove barriers to economic growth and promote economic reform and development in partner countries.