The Islamic Finance Council UK (UKIFC), Global Ethical Finance Initiative and Dubai International Finance Centre (DIFC) conducted a pioneering global survey that gauges the understanding and awareness of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) amongst retail consumers of Islamic finance products.
An output of the UK Government and Islamic Development Bank-backed Global Islamic Finance & UN SDGs Taskforce, the unique survey was produced by Sapio Research and took the novel approach to distribute the same set of questions to retail banking customers across the globe via CIMB Group (Malaysia), Gatehouse Bank (UK), Habib Bank Limited (Pakistan), Islamic Bank Australia (Australia) and Jaiz Bank (Nigeria).
The Key Findings:
- 90% (9 in 10) say it is important their bank provides products that are aligned to the UN SDGs
- 96% (19 in 20) say that it’s important that the finance products they purchase fit with the values and ethics of their life
- 71% (7 in 10) say the alignment of financial products with sustainability would encourage them to use their bank’s products more
- 87% (8 in 9) would be willing to pay more for financial products aligned to the UN SDGs
It is expected that data from the survey will provide an evidential, consumer-led basis for change in institutions providing Islamic finance.
This inherent link to the goals of the sharia together with evidence that there is significant demand, and that the costs of achieving sustainability are understood by consumers, there is a great opportunity for Islamic financial institutions to lead from the front in pushing the sustainability agenda in their target markets.