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Published On: Tue, Oct 16th, 2012

New Muslim Master Card has embedded compass to point to Mecca

A compass pointing the way to Mecca is embedded in a new MasterCard aimed at Muslims.

Gulf state-owned bank Al Hillal in the United Arab Emirates is issuing the new bank card which complies with Islamic laws banning charging interest on loans in a bid to appeal to the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims.

Islamic law or Shariah forbids ‘riba’, the charging of interest on loans, because it enables the rich to exploit the poor, creates social and economic tension and encourages risk, according to scholars.

In addition to the compass which allows the cardholder to orientate themselves towards prayers five times a day, the new MasterCard has other benefits, giving cardholders access to travel vouchers to pay for the Haj pilgrimage to Mecca, which Muslims are required to do at least once in their lifetime.

MasterCard spokesman James Issokson said, according to NBCNEWS.com: “We continue to see a growing demand, especially in the Middle East, for Islamic banking in general, and more specifically in our case, for cards that are Shariah-compliant in accordance with the tenets of the Islamic faith.”

“A percentage of the money spent using the card is donated to local charities,” Issokson added.

The Islamic banking industry is huge with more than 500 Shariah-compliant funds internationally holding $1.5 trillion in assets, up two-thirds since the industry launched seven years ago according to the Gulf Daily News.

Master Card for Muslims

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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