22nd May 2017, Manama, Kingdom Bahrain | The General Council for Islamic Banks and Financial Institutions (CIBAFI), the global umbrella of Islamic financial institutions took the initiative to establish CIBAFI Award presenting a unique opportunity for its member institutions around the world.
The purpose of the Award is to recognise and showcase Islamic financial institutions that provided outstanding example to the industry, based on specific criteria. The Inaugural Award will be granted to the member institution that implemented best practices in Environmental and Social Responsibility.
The concept of CIBAFI Award is derived from the “Core Values of Islamic Financial Institutions” also known as Maqasid Al Shariah. The criteria is to reward and encourage Islamic financial institutions (IFIs) to internalise the core values of Islamic finance in order to achieve the objectives of Shariah in financial dealings and transactions (transactional maqasid al-Shariah). The criteria include non-profit financing, philanthropic activities, financial inclusion activities, promoting environmental and social benefits in business lines, agreements and transactions.
The uniqueness of CIBAFI Award lies in its process. The selection is done by an independent committee deciding on the final Award winning institution with the attendance of an independent auditor who observes and supervises the processes and actually does the final score compilation. This committee evaluates each applicant by criteria, which in a way does not even allow the committee members to know who the winner is until all the marking is completed and compiled by the independent auditor. This is after an evaluation of the screening committee that shortlists top 10 nominations folowing the agreed Award criteria. The screening committee reviews submitted documentation for the Award with a Memo with information on activities and supporting documents provided by the institutions. Then the screeening committee prepares a report giving reasons for acceptance or rejection of each applicant for the Award to be reviewed by the selection committee. Finally, a due diligence is performed on the designated winning institution in the institution’s headquarters by members of screening committee. A due diligence report is provided after completion of site visit.
This Award is also unique in its transparent process as it does not carry any monetary retribution nor does it require any monetary contributions from the winning institution.