Media

Speech by YABhg Tun Musa Hitam at The Royal Award for Islamic Finance 2014, Gala Dinner & Award Ceremony

OPENING SALUTATION

BISMILLAHHIRAHMANIRRAHIM.

ASSALAMUALAIKUM WARAHMATULLAHI WABARAKATUH DAN SALAM SEJAHTERA.

MENGHADAP SERI PADUKA BAGINDA YANG DI-PERTUAN AGONG, ALMU’TASIMU BILLAHI MUHIBBUDDIN TUANKU AL’HAJ ABDUL HALIM MU’ADZAM SHAH IBNI ALMARHUM SULTAN BADLISHAH,

MENGHADAP SERI PADUKA BAGINDA RAJA PERMAISURI AGONG TUANKU HAJJAH HAMINAH,

MENGHADAP DULI YANG MAHA MULIA PADUKA SERI SULTAN PERAK DARUL RIDZUAN SULTAN NAZRIN MUIZZUDDIN SHAH,

MENGHADAP DULI YANG MAHA MULIA RAJA PERMAISURI PERAK DARUL RIDZUAN TUANKU ZARA SALIM.

AMPUN TUANKU.

TERLEBIH DAHULU PATIK INGIN MENGAMBIL KESEMPATAN INI UNTUK MERAFAK SEMBAH DAN SETINGGI-TINGGI MENJUNJUNG KASIH KEPADA SERI PADUKA BAGINDA TUANKU DAN SERI PADUKA BAGINDA RAJA PERMAISURI AGONG SERTA DULI YANG MAHA MULIA PADUKA SERI SULTAN PERAK DARUL RIDZUAN DAN RAJA PERMAISURI PERAK DARUL RIDZUAN KERANA BERKENAN MENCEMAR DULI BERANGKAT KE MAJLIS SANTAPAN PADA MALAM INI.

PATIK BERDO’A SEMOGA SERI PADUKA BAGINDA TUANKU BERDUA DAN DULI YANG MAHA MULIA PADUKA SERI SULTAN BERDUA SENTIASA BERADA DI DALAM PEMELIHARAAN ALLAH S.W.T. DENGAN PENUH KEMULIAAN DAN KEBESARANNYA.

AMIN YA RABBAL ALAMIN.

PATIK MOHON LIMPAH PERKENAN SERI PADUKA BAGINDA TUANKU BERDUA DAN DULI YANG MAHA MULIA PADUKA SERI SULTAN BERDUA BAGI PATIK MENYAMPAIKAN SEPATAH DUA KATA KEPADA PARA TETAMU YANG TURUT MENYERIKAN MAJLIS MALAM INI DALAM BAHASA INGGERIS.

AMPUN TUANKU.

YANG BERBAHAGIA TAN SRI DR ZETI AKHTAR AZIZ, GOVERNOR, CENTRAL BANK OF MALAYSIA;

YANG BERBAHAGIA DATUK RANJIT AJIT SINGH, CHAIRMAN, SECURITIES COMMISSION MALAYSIA;

YOUR EXCELLENCIES;

AND DISTINGUISHED GUESTS.

NOTE OF APPRECIATION

IT IS ONCE AGAIN MY HONOUR AND PRIVILEGE TO STAND BEFORE YOU TONIGHT, AS THE CHAIR OF THE JURY TO THE ROYAL AWARD FOR ISLAMIC FINANCE 2014.

I WOULD LIKE TO START BY CONVEYING MY THANKS AND APPRECIATION TO THE MANY PARTIES INVOLVED IN MAKING TONIGHT’S EVENT POSSIBLE:

  1. THE MALAYSIA INTERNATIONAL ISLAMIC FINANCIAL CENTRE MUST BE COMMENDED FOR SPEARHEADING THIS ROYAL AWARD INITIATIVE; AND TO BANK NEGARA MALAYSIA AND SECURITIES COMMISSION MALAYSIA FOR JOINTLY ORGANISING THE ROYAL AWARD;
  2. SPECIAL THANKS TO THE STEERING COMMITTEE FOR GIVING US – THE JURY – THEIR SUPPORT AND MOST IMPORTANTLY, THEIR FULL IMPARTIALITY IN THE DECISION MAKING PROCESS;
  3. AS CHAIR OF THE JURY, I WOULD LIKE TO THANK MY FELLOW JURORS FOR THE ROBUST CHALLENGE, DEBATE AND DISCUSSION DURING THE SELECTION PROCESS;
  4. MY HEARTFELT APPRECIATION TO THE SECRETARIAT TEAM FOR THEIR DEDICATION AND COMMITMENT IN MAKING THE ROYAL AWARD HAPPEN;
  5. AND FINALLY, THANK YOU TO ALL PRESENT HERE TONIGHT, ESPECIALLY THOSE FROM OVERSEAS, FOR JOINING US TO MAKE THIS GALA DINNER AND AWARD CEREMONY A MEMORABLE OCCASION.

ANNOUNCEMENT OF AWARD RECIPIENT

WHEN THE CALL FOR NOMINATIONS FOR THE ROYAL AWARD CLOSED ON 31st JANUARY 2014, WE RECEIVED 48 NOMINATIONS FROM AROUND THE WORLD. THIS IS A NOTABLE TWENTY-FIVE PERCENT INCREASE SINCE THE INUAGURAL AWARD IN 2010.

NOMINATIONS CAME FROM ALL PARTS OF THE WORLD – THE MIDDLE EAST, EUROPE, AFRICA, NORTH AMERICA AND THE ASIA PACIFIC REGION, AND FROM DIVERSE BACKGROUNDS IN ISLAMIC FINANCE – SUCH AS SHARIAH, ACADEMIA, INDUSTRY PRACTITIONERS, AND GOVERNMENT AGENCIES. THERE WERE ALSO NON-MUSLIM AND FEMALE CANDIDATES.

TO ME, THIS IS A CLEAR ENCOURAGING INDICATOR THAT ISLAMIC FINANCE IS NOW WIDELY ACCEPTED AS AN IMPORTANT SEGMENT OF THE GLOBAL FINANCIAL MARKETPLACE.

THE SELECTION CRITERIA COVERS BOTH QUALITATIVE AND QUANTITATIVE ASPECTS AND WHEN ASSESSING THE CANDIDATES, THE JURY TOOK INTO ACCOUNT INNOVATION AND PIONEERING WORK, AS WELL AS THE IMPACT OF THEIR CONTRIBUTION ON THE GLOBAL FINANCIAL MARKETPLACE.

THE JURY ALSO CONSIDERED THE LEADERSHIP ROLE, INSPIRATION, ADVOCACY AND INFLUENCE THAT THE CANDIDATE HAD PLAYED IN THE GLOBAL DEVELOPMENT, RECOGNITION AND ACCEPTANCE OF ISLAMIC FINANCE.

WITH ALL THESE IN MIND, IT IS MY SUPREME PLEASURE TO ANNOUNCE THAT THE RECIPIENT OF THE ROYAL AWARD FOR ISLAMIC FINANCE 2014 IS … DATO’ DR ABDUL HALIM ISMAIL.

ABOUT THE AWARD RECIPIENT

DR ABDUL HALIM STARTED HIS ILLUSTRIOUS CAREER IN ACADEMIA, AS THE FIRST DEAN OF THE FACULTY OF ECONOMICS & MANAGEMENT AT UNIVERSITI KEBANGSAAN MALAYSIA IN 1974.

WANTING TO DO MORE THAN JUST TEACH, DR ABDUL HALIM LEFT ACADEMIA TO JOIN A MANAGEMENT CONSULTING FIRM AS ECONOMIST AND STRATEGIC PLANNER, WHERE HE WAS INVOLVED IN PROJECTS FOR THE WORLD BANK AND THE MALAYSIAN GOVERNMENT.

AFTER JOINING BANK BUMIPUTRA AS GENERAL MANAGER AND CHIEF ECONOMIST IN 1997, DR HALIM SAW THE NEED FOR AN ISLAMIC BANK. HE THEN PLAYED A PROMINENT ROLE IN THE CONCEPTUALISION AND DEVELOPMENT OF AN OPERATIONAL FRAMEWORK FOR AN ISLAMIC BANK, WHICH WAS MOOTED AND APPROVED BY THE GOVERNMENT OF MALAYSIA.

DR ABDUL HALIM ISMAIL WAS APPOINTED AS THE FIRST MANAGING DIRECTOR OF BANK ISLAM MALAYSIA – THE FIRST FULL-FLEDGED ISLAMIC BANK IN THE REGION.  DURING HIS TENURE, BANK ISLAM WAS RECOGNISED INTERNATIONALLY AS A ROBUST ISLAMIC FINANCIAL INSTITUTION UPHOLDING SHARIAH BEST PRACTICES, AND SERVED AS A BENCHMARK FOR OTHER REGIONAL ISLAMIC FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS.

NOTWITHSTANDING THIS LANDMARK APPOINTMENT, DR ABDUL HALIM DID NOT REST ON HIS LAURELS BUT CONTINUED TO STRENGTHEN THE ISLAMIC FINANCE INDUSTRY BY SPEARHEADING THE DEVELOPMENT OF TAKAFUL, THAT IS ISLAMIC INSURANCE AND ISLAMIC STOCKBROKING.

DR ABDUL HALIM PROVIDED STRATEGIC CONSULTANCY TO COUNTRIES STARTING UP THEIR OWN ISLAMIC BANKS, AND ALSO COLLABORATED WITH MULTILATERAL AGENCIES TO DEVELOP POLICIES AND STANDARDS IN ISLAMIC FINANCE, ECONOMICS AND ACCOUNTING. 

DR ABDUL HALIM IS QUITE EXTRAORDINARY AS HE WAS ABLE TO BRIDGE THE KNOWLEDGE GAP BETWEEN THE SHARIAH FRATERNITY AND THE FINANCE INDUSTRY DURING THOSE FORMATIVE YEARS. AND THOUGH LONG RETIRED, HE CONTINUES TO SERVE ON VARIOUS COMMITTEES AND SHARIAH COUNCILS, AND ALSO LENDS HIS VOICE TO CHAMPION GLOBALLY-RECOGNIZED SHARIAH COMPLIANT STANDARDS IN ISLAMIC FINANCE.

AS HIS ACHIEVEMENTS AND CONTRBUTIONS ARE FAR TOO NUMEROUS FOR ME TO MENTION, A SPECIAL VIDEO PRESENTATION ABOUT DR ABDUL HALIM AFTER THIS WOULD ADD ON TO HIS ACHIEVEMENTS.

CONCLUSION

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN –

BEFORE I CONCLUDE, ALLOW ME TO STRESS HERE THAT THE JURY HAD OBSERVED A MOST DILIGENT AND OBJECTIVE SELECTION PROCESS, AND THAT THE DECISION WAS UNANIMOUS.

MANY OF YOU WOULD KNOW THAT DR ABDUL HALIM IS A QUIET AND UNASSUMING MAN, BUT THERE IS NO DOUBT IN MY MIND THAT THE DEVELOPMENT OF ISLAMIC FINANCE IN MALAYSIA AND INDEED MUCH OF THE WORLD, HAD BENEFITED FROM HIS FORESIGHT, VISION, DEDICATION, COMMITMENT AND LEADERSHIP.

SO LET ME ON BEHALF OF ALL OF YOU AND IF I MAY, AS CHAIRMAN OF THE JURY, OFFER OUR MOST SINCERE CONGRATULATIONS TO DATO’ DR ABDUL HALIM ISMAIL, ON BEING THE RECIPIENT OF THE ROYAL AWARD FOR ISLAMIC FINANCE 2014.

AMPUN TUANKU.

SEKIAN SAHAJALAH PERSEMBAHAN UCAPAN PATIK DAN SEKALI LAGI PATIK DENGAN PENUH HORMAT DAN TAKZIM MERAFAK SEMBAH MENJUNJUNG KASIH YANG TIDAK TERHINGGA DI ATAS PERKENAN SERI PADUKA BAGINDA TUANKU BERDUA SERTA DULI YANG MAHA MULIA PADUKA SERI SULTAN BERDUA BERANGKAT MENCEMAR DULI KE MAJLIS PADA MALAM INI.

SEKIAN, WABILLAHITAUFIK WALHIDAYAH WASSALAMUALAIKUM WAROHMATULLAHI WABARAKATUH.

AMPUN TUANKU.