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Jakarta Post

Indonesia paves way to becoming sharia finance hub

  • Eisya A. Eloksari


Jakarta   /   Mon, February 15 2021   /  01:00 am
Digital sharia service: A Bank Mandiri Syariah employee serves a customer on Thursday at the lender’s Central Jakarta office. The sharia banking subidiary of Bank Mandiri is digitalizing its services, and customers can now open new accounts on their smartphones.(JP/Wendra Ajistyatama)

Indonesia recently launched its largest sharia bank, Bank Syariah Indonesia (BSI), as it seeks to develop the country into a sharia finance hub. The government of the world’s largest Muslim-majority country has been looking to develop its sharia economy since establishing the Indonesian Sharia Economy Master Plan 2019-2024 for becoming a prominent player in the global sharia economy. Despite the ambitious plan, information on Islamic banking and finance has been generally lacking for consumers. According to the Financial Services Authority (OJK), Indonesia’s sharia financial literacy rate was a mere 8.93 percent in 2019, far below the conventional financial literacy rate of 37.72 percent. Experts still maintain that sharia banking has potential to grow and even support the country’s larger halal economy. Read also: Sharia finance thrives despite pandemic, to...