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CIMB plans to offer microloans

CIMB Islamic Bank of Malaysia plans to start offering microloans in the country as it seeks new growth avenues after the plan to create a mega bank by merging three banks has been shelved. CEO of the Islamic banking unit of the bank Badlisyah Abdul Ghani said the bank is exploring the undertaking and are looking to launch something subject to relevant approvals by this year. Islamic microloans account for less than 1% of such lending worldwide and greater participation will help spur growth in the $1.7 trillion Shariah-compliant financing industry, he said. In Malaysia, where 36% of the 30 million people live in rural areas, the government is aiming to boost gross national income per capita to $15,000 in 2020 from $10,060 in 2013, as part of its 10-year development plan.

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