The Sarajevo Stock Exchange (SASE), in cooperation with Bosna Bank International, founded with capital from Islamic countries, has launched the SASE Islamic Index that will follow the trends in prices of shares of 25 companies operating on Bosnia and Herzegovina's market.

"The Sarajevo Stock Exchange and BBI have joined forces with the goal of creating the List and the Index of companies which are traded on SASE, and whose business is in line with principles of Islamic economy," the SASE says in a press release in which it explains the reasons for the introduction of the new index.

The starting (base) value of SASX-BBI index is 10,000, and base date is October 7, 2016. 

The SASE director, Tarik Kurbegovic, said at a news conference on Monday that the stock exchange in the Bosnian capital followed the practice that already existed on many other stock exchanges.

"We are the first stock exchange in the region to introduce this index. The Islamic economy is rising worldwide, not only in the Islamic world. All the global stock exchanges have Islamic indices and this is not a novelty. We have decided to make sure that this region can offer such kind of product. Local companies and the SASE-BBI index will be noticeable in the entire world through our channels of distribution," said Kurbegovic.

The aim is to attract foreign investors whose businesses operate in compliance with Islamic commercial jurisprudence (fiqh), according to the SASE director.

SASE and BBI have compiled a list of 117 local companies that have met criteria of adjustment to the Islamic commercial jurisprudence, and they are supposed to be potentially attractive to investors.

The BBI director, Amer Bukvic, said that the launch of this index was intended to encourage the opening of Sarajevo and Bosnia and Herzegovina to foreign investors in all segments. The focus is on the halal (allowed or permitted by Islamic Law) industry, Bukvic explained.

He underscored that the finance sector that operated according to Islamic business jurisprudence was rapidly rising, with annual growths between 15-20%.

Bosna Bank International d.d. was established in October 2000 as the first bank in Europe to operate on principles of Islamic banking.

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