Post-Covid-19: Is Islamic economics the way forward?

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The last three months have seen all sorts of data flying just as much around as the coronavirus. Pew Research Center, Womply, 7Park Data and numerous other surveyors and data providers have worked as sources to back up news stories.

From number of deaths to number of infections, from job loss to furlough schemes, from superb profits of supermarkets to terminally ill global markets, statistical data has been the bedrock of information and news.

While there has been a great variety in analyses based on such data, data providers have unanimously agreed on one analysis: The global economy is on a ventilator! World leaders must be, in the heart of their hearts, much thankful to the coronavirus, which has happily taken the role of their scapegoat.

For leaders who wanted to shut their borders with certain countries or those that had only just broken away from the European Union with no clear road-map; or those who had no answers for their failing economy; or those that were helplessly watching their health systems fail, the coronavirus seems to have come to help in taking all blame.

Every country has been affected by the outbreak of the deadly pandemic in different ways, but the one common blow – or megablow if you like – has been to their economies.

Standing at the slippery cliff of economic disaster, every nation is worried about where to start. While some nations have just plunged into opening up industries and retail outlets, others think that this alone may not be a sufficient enough measure to resuscitate an economy that might still seem alive, but is virtually, clinically dead.

Wiser are those nations whose economic advisers have understood the fact that capitalism is no longer going to work. Major powers are now looking at China’s model and considering it as a prototype in their own way forward. China, on the other hand, has suffered bitterly at the hands of a communist economy and borrowed much from capitalism. The state still dominates the economy, while allowing a controlled structure of free-market – a hybrid model of communist and laissez-faire economies.

Western economists sometimes like to call the Chinese model a “third way”, but the fact of the matter is that the third way is yet to be explored. Why the Chinese model cannot be called a third way is for its capitalist inspiration, where a flimsy cloak of communism is only there to save face.

The “third way” is yet to be explored by the world economy and that is none else but the Islamic economic structure.

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat has been calling for this consideration for a very long time, but strong, proud and flamboyant economies of the world have always brushed it away. Now that the global economy has experienced and seen for themselves that they cannot fall back on capitalist economies with the hope to bounce back, we thought that now is the time to get our message across again, while the high-flying, arrogant economies seem to be walking on earth.

Hazrat Mirza Bashiurddin Mahmud Ahmadra, the second Khalifa of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat, has very clearly outlined how Islam, allowing free-market to flourish under state control, is the only answer to the failure of capitalism and communism, both.

The Economic System of Islam is a lecture he delivered in 1945. Where free-market flourishes, yet the state oversees the well-being of the nation as a whole is the ideal and only system that can lead the way in terms of economy. Interest has to be replaced with other forms of incentive to allow borrowing, yet curb economic exploitation of the weaker sections of society.

It is only in the Islamic economic structure that the privileged are bound to contribute towards the welfare of the less-privileged, i.e. through the institution of Zakat.

Coming to the Ahmadiyya Islamic economics, the system of Wasiyyat – where 10% of all assets are paid for upholding the ideal of an Islamic welfare state – is the only unique example, where property and assets remain in personal ownership but are still contributed towards the solidarity and well-being of the state. The details of this can be read in another great work of Hazrat Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud Ahmadra, titled, Nizam-e-Nau (The New World Order).

During a meeting of 20 most powerful economies of the world – more commonly known as G20 – the German Finance Minister, Wolfgang Schaeuble made it very clear to the mastermind economists of the world:

“Islamic finance is growing in importance for the global economy. It is therefore important that international financial institutions consider questions related to integrating Islamic finance into global finance.”

We will be writing on this topic in greater detail very soon. In the meantime, we leave our readers for some food for thought.

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  1. Good article. JazakAllah. Though one wonders if the vested interests of the world will give up without a fight. I fear the arrogant nations are waiting for an even greater calamity to strike them. One which levels the field so much that there’s no more first world or third world. Rather just one very scorched world where everyone is impoverished.
    May Allah open the eyes of the public in the powerful nations to accept the truth or at least hold their leaders to a account.


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