Islamic Finance as a Means to Make Istanbul an International Financial Centre


This paper discusses and assesses Istanbul as an international finance centre within the context of its position in the sector of Islamic finance. No doubt, Istanbul is a centre of business and culture of Turkey and the Turkish government is at present endeavouring to turn Istanbul into a regional finance centre in ten years and ,furthermore, into one of the top international financial centre in thirty years. In this context we evaluate Istanbul’s potential and position to assume the role of a hub for Islamic finance. Our main conclusions are as follows; the current image, legal and regulatory infrastructure and human capacity of Istanbul do not presently allow it to become an international finance centre. In contrast, if we consider its strategic location standing between the Middle East, Eurasia and Africa as well as its strong relations with Muslim countries, and ,last but not least, its strong banking system, Istanbul has the potential to serve as a centre for Islamic finance provided that the government’s ambitions remain focused in this direction.

Afro Eurasian Studies