Post-default sukuk restructuring: an appraisal of Shari'ah issues

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Sukuk restructuring primarily aims at offering a debtor more latitude, in form and time, to settle his obligations. To meet Shari'ah requirements of transferring assets to Sukuk holders in asset-based Sukuk, the originator usually transfers the beneficial ownership to the issuer special purpose vehicles (SPV). However, in asset-backed Sukuk, the originator sells the underlying asset to an SPV and Sukuk holders do not have recourse to the originator in the event of defaults. Among some key unresolved Shari'ah issues in this regard is whether a change of contract necessitates entering a new contract. Other related issues that conflict with the tenets of Shari'ah are: (1) Sukuk structuring on tangible assets and debts; (2) receiving the full title by the Sukuk holders to the underlying assets in the event of default in case of securities that are publicized as asset backed; (3) Sukuk's similarity with interest bearing conventional bonds: (a) capital guarantee by the originator or third party, (b) the originators, promise to repurchase Sukuk at face value upon their redemption, and (c) providing internal and external credit enhancement. The Shari'ah-compliance of the above-mentioned clauses and structures of Sukuk remain debated among the Shari'ah scholars. Based on some specific cases, this study examines the Shari'ah viewpoint on sukuk restructuring and potential solutions to these unresolved Shari'ah issues in light of the past and recent declaration of some Sukuk defaults as non-Shari'ah complaints. Undoubtedly, resolution of these and other unresolved issues pertaining to Sukuk defaults can help strengthen the confidence of investors in Islamic capital market structures.
Sukuk , Sukuk restructuring , Shari'ah , Asset-based , Asset-backed , Default , Ownership
Ahmad, Abu Umar Faruq and Muneeza, Aishath and Farooq, Mohammad Omar and Hasan, Rashedul. (2019). Islamic corporate finance: capital structure. In Management of Islamic finance: principle, practice, and performance (pp. 113-128). London: Emerald Publishing Limited.
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