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England to sell Islamic bonds

From Times Wire Services

Britain’s treasury is committed to selling government bonds that conform to Islamic law, the first Western country to sell such securities, Treasury Minister Kitty Ussher said.

Decisions on tax rates and the underlying assets that would back the securities, known as sukuk, have yet to be made, Ussher said.

Sukuk bonds bar interest payments, typically paying an agreed profit distribution based on the underlying assets.

Global sukuk sales climbed to $30.8 billion in 2007 from $18.1 billion a year earlier, according to Bloomberg.

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