Conference Agenda

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Session Overview
14-08: Emerging Alternative Land Tools in MENA and Asia
Friday, 24/Mar/2017:
11:00am - 12:30pm

Location: MC 10-100

For more information or signing up, please contact

ID: 1008 / 14-08: 1
MasterClass - learning day events

Emerging Alternative Land And Financing Tools In MENA And Asia

M. Siraj Sait1, Jean Du Plessis2, Reza Pourvaziry3

1University of East London, United Kingdom; 2UN-Habitat, Global Land Tool Network, Kenya; 3International City Leaders, Canada

Most countries in the MENA region and parts of Asia have dual land economy systems and pluralist legal frameworks. Apart from conventional land financing tools, participative and ethical finance models are accelerating newer opportunities for land development. For example, Islamic finance is now estimated globally at over $2 trillion driving much of real estate, infrastructure and development business with their potential recently recognised in mainstream land discourse. Similarly, several innovative land tenure practices in these regions offer supplemental tools for strengthening sustainable land access and governance. This Masterclass focuses on some key distinctive concepts, tools and practices emerging from these alternate methods. In addition to identifying the main products and their compatibility with conventional systems, the session offers a practical overview of trends in countries ranging from the UAE, Iran and Saudi Arabia to Malaysia, Pakistan and Indonesia. The effectiveness of 'ethical' finance, its participative risk-sharing features, community land-based products and land investment bonds are assessed in facilitating equitable land rights and governance. Their contribution to financial inclusion, gender equality and youth employment in conflict, disaster or transition communities is also explored. The Masterclass would interest researchers, policy makers, civil society partners and project managers working in MENA and Asia.

Professor Siraj Sait is Director of the Centre of Islamic Finance, Law and Communities (CIFLAC), an interdisciplinary research led centre at the Royal Docks School of Business and Law at the University of East London, UK. A graduate of the Universities of Madras, Harvard and London, Sait has widely published in the areas of land and property rights, gender, youth, conflict studies and financial inclusion particularly in the MENA and Asia region. His research impact case study on land rights in the MENA region was highly ranked at the UK Research Excellence Framework Exercise 2014. He has worked with the Government of Tamil Nadu, India and at UN-Habitat helped set up the Global Land Tool Network, and has worked exensively with international agencies, governments and civil society. He headed the evaluation of UN programmes in Iraq, chaired the law drafting committee in Mogadishu Somalia, carried out training of Indonesian officials for the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and training of officials on municipal finance in Saudi Arabia, and serves as member of the Advisory Group on Gender Issues advises the UN-Habitat Executive Director.