Kuwait's KIA to boost Islamic investments


Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA), which manages the Gulf Arab state's oil-generated assets, wants to boost its portfolio of investments compliant with Muslim beliefs, a newspaper reported on Sunday.

Bader al-Saad told Awan newspaper that KIA was making "very high" returns on investments which comply with Islamic law banning the receipt of interest or buying into certain sectors such as producers of alcoholic beverages or pornography.

"Returns from Islamic financial activities are currently very high due to the growth of the Islamic banking industry and the issue of sukuks [Islamic bonds]," he said.

KIA, which earlier this year bought into US banks Citigroup and Merrill Lynch, had at least $213 billion of assets under management on March 31, 2007.