Inter-area/Border Crossing

Organized Panel Session

5 - South Korea’s Response to Islamic Economy: Is It Possible to Have Access to Islamic Market without Being Influenced by Islam?

Saturday, July 7
12:10 PM - 1:40 PM
Location: Casuarina, Lower Ground Floor

In recent years, financial activities conducted under the banner of “Islamic economy” have grown significantly in volume and scope, attracting significant attention worldwide. Islamic economy has been spreading its spectrum from Islamic finance and daily consumption of goods and services such as halal food to travel, fashion, media, recreation, pharmaceutical, and cosmetics. In a globalized world, Islamic finance has not only penetrated different Islam societies but also non-Islam countries such as U.K. and Hong Kong. Also, non-Muslim entrepreneurs have exported their products to Islam countries by obtaining halal certificates. South Korea is the eighth largest economy in the world in terms of trade volumes, but much behind in Islamic economy. In 2009, introducing ‘Sukuk’, the sharia-compliant bonds, became a controversial issue in Korean society. In 2016, the South Korean government initiated to build a halal food complex in the south-west province of the country. However, the former was rejected and the latter was canceled. Some Christian lobbying groups opposed the moves, arguing that giving tax benefits for Sukuk would be unfair, and some of the proceeds of Sukuk deals may even finance terrorist groups. The paper investigates Korean society’s socio-religious sentiments that may explain why Islamic economy has had difficulties in taking root in Korea. Secondly, it analyzes how the adoption of Islamic economy has affected Korean society. Finally, it investigates whether it is possible or not for South Korea to adopt Islamic finance and halal system without being influenced by Islam. 

Jihyouk Lee

Dong-A University, Republic of Korea

Presentation(s):

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5 - South Korea’s Response to Islamic Economy: Is It Possible to Have Access to Islamic Market without Being Influenced by Islam?



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