Factbox measuring the worlds islamic financial centers

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DUBAI Competition is escalating between global financial centers - particularly London, Dubai and Kuala Lumpur - to attract Islamic financial business, as the industry grows faster than conventional finance. Following is a comparative summary of the Islamic finance sectors in the three centers. LONDON Islamic banking assets: $19 billion. Number of banks: over 20 institutions offer sharia-compliant financial services, including six full-fledged Islamic banks. Sukuk issuance: over $34 billion raised through 49 issues on London Stock Exchange since 2009. Scholarship: 60 institutions offer Islamic finance courses and 22 universities have similar degrees. Strategic strengths: Huge and liquid conventional markets; widely respected legal system. Strategic weakness: Lack of natural Islamic hinterland.

DUBAI Islamic banking assets: $75 billion in retail banking assets across United Arab Emirates in 2011. Number of banks: seven Islamic retail banks in UAE. Sukuk issuance: $12.1 billion now listed on Dubai exchanges.

Scholarship: The UAE has 31 institutes and 9 universities offering Islamic finance education; the government has also launched the Dubai Centre For Islamic Banking and Finance. Strategic strengths: Top banking center for Gulf Arab region; entrepreneurial culture; state-run firms which are regular sukuk issuers. Strategic weakness: Relatively untested as regulatory center. KUALA LUMPUR

Islamic banking assets: $135 billion. Number of banks: 16 Islamic banks. Sukuk issuance: Outstanding sukuk totaled $148 billion in 2012. Scholarship: 50 institutions offering industry courses and 18 universities offering degrees. Strategic strengths: Islamic hinterland in southeast Asia; reputation for strong regulation. Strategic weakness: Financial markets more focused on domestic business than Dubai and London. Sources: Islamic Finance Development Indicator; Ernst & Young; local stock exchanges and central banks.