L'année 2020 was dominated by the COVID-19 pandemic and its impacts on our lives but other issues also grabbed the global Islamic economy’s attention. Here’s our pick of 7 stories and issues of significance for the Islamic economy and Islamic countries, and that we expect will continue to make an impact in 2021.
1. Food security
Cette année, global supply chains were disrupted due to COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns and other restrictions. Par conséquent, many consumers found themselves staring at empty supermarket shelves as panic buying outstripped deliveries.
Food security has long been an issue for countries of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OCI) but this year really set off alarm bells because OIC countries import most of their foods. The COVID-19 pandemic laid bare the countries’ vulnerability to disruptions in foreign food supplies.
We saw notable moves in countries such as the UAE and Saudi Arabia to safeguard not just mid-term food supplies but also to take better control of their long-term food security.
2. Muslim mental health
The COVID-19 virus created chaos, panic, and anxieties amid a lot of uncertainties for everyone this year. Lockdowns and social distancing measures kept families and friends apart, and many were isolated. As the months wore on, not all businesses could continue to operate and this took a toll on employment and household incomes.
The issue of mental health came to the fore this year. For Muslims, cette année a vraiment eu un impact sur la façon dont nous adorons en tant que communauté et a testé notre patience et notre résilience en tant que mosquées, Ramadan, deux Aïd, le hajj et la umrah ont tous été touchés.
3. Islam virtuel
Nikah par skype, iftaars du Ramadan en ligne, Aïd par Zoom, et audits halal virtuels. Comme nous étions physiquement séparés cette année, de plus en plus de nos activités ont été mises en ligne car la pandémie n'a montré aucun signe de ralentissement dans de nombreux pays.
Sera-ce une "nouvelle normalité", alors que beaucoup d'entre nous s'habituent à une vie de plus en plus numérique?
4. Commerce électronique
La pandémie a considérablement stimulé le commerce électronique cette année, car les magasins physiques ont été fermés pendant les périodes de verrouillage ou d'autres restrictions. C'est un développement que la plupart des gens considèrent comme une "nouvelle normalité".
5. pharmacie halal
Grâce à la course au vaccin contre le COVID-19, solutions were developed and rushed to market by the fourth quarter of 2020. Through it all, we kept wondering if there would be a halal COVID-19 vaccine. The interest in this issue spilled over into a bigger awareness about halal pharma.
le halal pharma industry is still nascent. Universally accepted halal standards are not yet in place, although the OIC regulatory body, ISMPI, is working towards them. SMIIC only established a technical committee on halal pharmaceuticals (TC 16) dans 2019.
6. Bank mergers
Mergers among banks in the GCC have been picking up pace in the last couple of years but this year saw the biggest one. Saudi Arabia’s National Commercial Bank and Samba Financial Group agreed to merge in October, creating an institution with 837 billion riyals ($223 milliard) in assets.
The other big merger is over in Indonesia, involving Bank Mandiri, Bank Negara Indonesia and Bank Rakyat Indonesia. The three-way merger of the state-owned banks will form a $15 billion Islamic bank.
The impacts of these two significant mergers will no doubt start to be felt in 2021.
7. Plant-based alternatives
Plant-based meat alternatives have grown rapidly in the last few years as more consumers choose to reduce their meat consumption. Dans 2019, the global plant-based meat sector’s retail sales hit $18.6 billion and is forecast to grow at an annual rate of 6.7% through 2024, according to Euromonitor International.
What’s been interesting about this sector is its spread in the Middle East, especially in the UAE, and that manufacturers are choosing to get halal certification. This is one sector that is certain to keep on growing in 2021.