As part of Autoriti Monetari Brunei Darussalam’s (AMBD) continuous efforts and commitment to support the development of Islamic finance and the financial services in the country, the organisation has been taking steps towards creating conditions conducive to the development of the interbank market ecosystem.
This is in line with the Brunei Darussalam Financial Sector Blueprint (FSBP) 2016-2025, said AMBD Managing Director Hajah Rokiah binti Haji Badar yesterday in her welcoming remarks at the signing ceremony of the AMBD Islamic Bills (AMBD I-Bills) Programme with banks in Brunei Darussalam yesterday.
Minister of Home Affairs cum Deputy Chairman of AMBD Board of Directors Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Kerna Dato Seri Setia (Dr) Haji Awang Abu Bakar bin Haji Apong attended the signing at the Ministry of Finance and Economy (MoFE).
Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office Dato Seri Setia Haji Awang Abdul Mokti bin Haji Mohd Daud as well as Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew bin Abdullah also attended.
AMBD Board of Directors, members of the Syariah Financial Supervisory Board and senior officers from the MoFE, AMBD and financial institutions also witnessed the signing.
Hajah Rokiah represented AMBD, while signing on behalf of the respective banks were Ti Eng Hui (CEO of Baiduri Bank Group), Mubashar Khokhar (CEO of Bank Islam Brunei Darussalam Berhad); Wang Xiaolin (General Manager of Bank of China (Hong Kong), Sulaiman Isa (General Manager of Malayan Banking Berhad, Brunei Branch), Haji Ishak bin Othman (Country Head of RHB Bank Berhad, Brunei Branch), Abdul Razak bin Abdul Malek (Senior Vice President and Country Manager of United Overseas Bank Limited, Brunei Branch) and Annie Ng Sew Foon (Chief Financial Officer and Chief Risk Officer of Standard Chartered Bank).
The ceremony began with the recitation of Surah Al-Fatihah and Doa.
Hajah Rokiah also shared that AMBD embarked on the establishment of the Domestic Money Market Project (consisting three milestones) in 2017.
Under the first deliverable, AMBD issued a notice to introduce an averaging mechanism to the Minimum Cash Balance (MCB) requirement which provided banks with greater flexibility in their daily liquidity management.
The following year, AMBD introduced the Syariah-compliant and conventional overnight standing facilities, aimed at facilitating the smooth functioning of the financial system through the lending/funding facilities and deposit/acceptance facilities.
The introduction of these facilities also created a level playing field for both Islamic and conventional banks in Brunei Darussalam and the tenor for the facilities are on an overnight basis, offered to licensed banks in the country, she added.
AMBD I-Bills Programme is the third and final deliverable under the project, to further support the effective and efficient liquidity management for the banks and at the same time, widen the list of available money market instruments for AMBD and the domestic financial sector.
The inaugural AMBD I-Bills will be based on the Syariah concept of Wakalah bil Ujrah, which is the first Syariah structure of its kind to be used for Sukuk issuance in Brunei Darussalam.
The introduction of AMBD I-Bills will be part of the short-term benchmark yield curve, said the managing director, adding that it is hoped to be able to facilitate the development of other financial instruments in Brunei Darussalam, particularly Syariah-compliant ones.
Prior to the signing, a presentation on Sukuk Development in Brunei Darussalam was delivered by Acting Assistant Managing Director (Monetary Operations) at AMBD Mardini bin Haji Eddie.
He said the AMBD I-Bills will have a tenor of two weeks and issuance will be available to licensed banks in the country.
The first issuance of the AMBD I-Bills will be on October 22.