May 8, 2013 / 9:01 PM / 4 years ago

Egypt's president signs Islamic bond bill into law

2 Min Read

CAIRO, May 8 (Reuters) - Egypt's President Mohamed Mursi has approved a law allowing the state to issue Islamic bonds, the official gazette said on Wednesday, ending a troubled passage for a bill the government hopes will help revive its flagging finances.

Egypt's upper house of parliament, which has assumed temporary legislative powers, approved the law last week after amending it to meet recommendations from Al-Azhar, the country's leading Islamic authority.

The Islamist-led government hopes the law will allow it to tap billions from the Islamic bond, or sukuk, market and bolster state finances hammered in the two years since an uprising ousted President Hosni Mubarak.

Egypt's official gazette said the law had been approved by Mursi and would go into effect on Wednesday. Regulations for using the law would be issued within three months, it added.

Lawmakers had approved the law in March, but Al-Azhar objected, saying its top scholars should have been consulted on the law as stated in the new, Islamic-tinged constitution.

Al-Azhar said this month it had given its approval to the law on condition that certain articles be amended. It was not clear whether the law had been sent to Al-Azhar for approval again or not. (Reporting by Alexander Dziadosz; Editing by Michael Roddy)

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