Bangladesh Bank will introduce Shariah-based refinancing scheme for Small and Medium Enterprises and other thrust sectors, says governor Atiur Rahman. He told a seminar that Shariah compliant mode of refinance support from the bank’s Export Development Fund (EDF) would be available to SMEs and other thrust sector lending by Islamic banks. State minister for finance M.A. Mannan, and Islamic Development Bank president Ahmad Mohammed Ali also addressed the seminar. Eminent Islamic banking expert Azizul Huq presented the keynote paper on Shariah-based Islamic banking, signifying the growing role of Islamic banking in socially responsible financing of trade and output activities in the country’s economy, including underserved and un-served sectors like agriculture and MSMEs. The governor said Shariah-based Islamic banking already constitutes about a fifth of the country’s banking sector. He said the government acted early towards introduction of a government Islamic investment bond of six-month tenor to facilitate liquidity management of Islamic banks; introduction of another similar instrument of three-month tenor for further facilitation is at the final stage.