FX news: BLME launches Shariah-compliant platform
Not that I know anything about Shariah law, but I would have thought a Shariah-compliant FX trading platform would be a long way off. But no, Bank of London and The Middle East (BLME) has announced “the launch of BLMEFX, one of the world’s first Shariah-compliant web-based FX trading platforms to provide clients with direct access to multiple currencies in order to undertake overseas transactions.” Note the words: “one of the first” – it’s obviously been done before; shamefully, your correspondent doesn’t know any more than that.
BLME was incorporated in 2006, received full authorisation from the FSA in 2007, and is already the largest Islamic bank in Europe. Its CEO is Humphrey Percy, formerly global head of financial markets at WestLB and before that global head of FX at Barclays.
Percy says: “Given the increasingly international scope of Islamic finance, there was an urgent need to develop a Shariah-compliant FX platform to take the strain out of cross-border transactions. In addition, our expertise and local market knowledge within the GCC and European currency pairs in the spot market meant that we were ideally placed to develop an FX product that fulfils the need of our customers and that offers the same functionality as a conventional product.”