‘East Africa’s fairly developed infrastructure and communication sector, a young educated tech savvy population and their ability to capitalise on technology development provides a great opportunity for the region to lead in the Islamic Finance digital economy’ – Agnes Gitau, GBS Africa elaborating the theme of the 3rd edition of the East Africa Islamic Economy Summit.
The East Africa’s Islamic Economy Summit 2018 which takes place in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi on the 24th & 25th is therefore themed around Fintech as a driver for Islamic Economy in East Africa as well as Financial inclusion in the region.
Five years back, with the support of key institutions in East Africa, GBS Africa started a conversation around Islamic Finance, Islamic Economy and East Africa’s economic development. This conversation has grown to become an annual gathering for the region where significant players in East Africa’s economy meet to set the way forward for the development of the sector, aligning deliberations to East Africa’s economic development agenda. This year’s program which has had great input from leading experts in the Islamic Economy will therefore cover Islamic Economy to define its role within the Financial sector, the emergence of Fintech, opportunities for East Africa in the Islamic digital economy which according to Ernst &Young has the potential of 150 million new customers by 2021.
Kenya, renowned not only for its Athletic might but also as the country that pioneered the mobile money technology through MPESA, continues to make efforts towards its vision to become Africa’s Financial hub. The East Africa nation which will host this year’s event joined the Islamic Financial Board last year and has indicated plans for a Sukuk Bond to finance both national and regional infrastructure projects.
The conference will look at key factors that will impact the development of Islamic Economy in the region and call on all stakeholders to play their role in advancing Financial Inclusion in East Africa.