Muslims in Malaysia are apparently worried about bitcoin’s compliance with Sharia law, but now the chair of Malaysia’s Sharia Advisory Council has come out to say not only that cryptos are sharia compliant, but also that they offer many opportunities.
“This new development can open up so many interesting areas in Malaysia, in which crypto can be deemed as investment assets where people can buy and hold for trading,” said the Shariah Advisory Council chairman of the Securities Commission of Malaysia (SC) Datuk Dr Daud Bakar.
Just 2% of Malaysians have any knowledge about cryptos with Bakar saying they need time to understand:
“It is a matter of our ability to make it easy for people to understand, because at the moment, it is a new thing and people tend to think it is very much a conundrum and matter of perception,” he said during the SCxSC Fintech Conference 2020 held today in Kuala Lumpur.
The somewhat small country of 30 million is fairly rich at a GDP of $360 billion and growing.
They have licensed three exchanges; Luno Malaysia, Sinegy Technologies and Tokenize Malaysia, but only bitcoin, eth and xrp can be traded there.
Bakar raised the possibility of cryptos being used to finance new ventures or projects, stating “the potential of this currency is great as it comes with a growing digital economy of the world.”
“This also has opened opportunities to take advantage of cryptos as a commodity or as an investment in a company,” Bakar said.
That cryptos are sharia compliant was settled back in 2018 by Indonesia, with bitcoin in particular considered by many the most sharia compliant money to have ever existed.
Even mosques accept bitcoin for donations, and a global zakat service has launched, zakat being the equivalent of tithe.
It appears however only now is bitcoin moving towards the mainstream in Malaysia, with regulators there seemingly keen to promote what many see as advanced technology.
“We are fighting for the last mile, which is the ability for digital currency to make the whole thing more efficient,” Baku said.