The Bank Negara Malaysia Shariah Advisory Council (SAC) was established in May 1997 and held its first meeting on 8 July 1997. Over the years, it has played an instrumental role in shaping the development of Islamic finance in Malaysia – its rulings not only preserve the sanctity of Shariah, but also sustain public confidence and create a conducive environment for the industry to innovate and grow.
To commemorate this 20 years, a dinner was held on 12 December 2017 at the Shangri-La Hotel in Kuala Lumpur. The dinner was graced by His Royal Highness (HRH) Sultan Nazrin Shah, the Sultan of Perak Darul Ridzuan and Her Royal Highness Tuanku Zara Salim, Raja Permaisuri Perak. It also witnessed the presence of Y.B. Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani, Minister of Finance II and Y.B. Senator Dato’ Dr. Asyraf Wajdi bin Dato’ Dusuki, Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department.
In his royal address, HRH Sultan Nazrin highlighted the potential role of Islamic finance in creating value for the Ummah. Social instruments such are zakat, sadaqah and waqaf are powerful tools to address global social crises, which if paired up with the right technology, could be used to mobilise funds on a much larger scale.
In his welcoming remarks, Governor called on Shariah scholars to be not just leaders in Shariah knowledge, but also as catalysts for business innovations. He also encouraged the community to pursue a relentless quest for knowledge through continuous and lifelong learning, including of knowledge from other domains such as accounting, law, economics and technology.
During the dinner, HRH Sultan Nazrin Shah launched an illustrated book produced by the Bank entitled “20 Years of the Shariah Advisory Council: From Principles to Practice” that narrates the critical milestones and contributions of the SAC over its 20 year history. Together with the launching, the Bank also released two books, “Shariah Standards and Operational Requirements”, a compilation of 12 Shariah standards that will guide the industry in developing Shariah-compliant products, as well as the third edition of “Kompilasi Keputusan Shariah dalam Kewangan Islam”, comprising Shariah resolutions in Islamic finance that were issued and published from 2011-2017.