- International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) – Office of Corporate Strategy
Over 20 percent of the world's population is influenced to varying degrees by Islamic principles and practice, either through official systems or informal practices. Among other areas, Islamic principles are impacting on land and property. But despite the wide geographical spread and relevance of such principles, they are often not sufficiently documented and aligned with informal and statutory systems. This impacts land management systems as well as security of tenure across the Muslim world. Land systems and tenure approaches around the globe rarely acknowledge that several Islamic principles potentially offer opportunities for enhancing property rights, one of them is how they could empower women.
Islamic principles and practices influence many aspects of everyday life in Muslim society. This includes the perception of property and land rights. Since Islamic principles are based on an obligation towards God and the Muslim society as a whole, they can be influential in promoting land access and re-distribution for marginalized groups. There are also distinctive Islamic approaches to land administration, urban planning, and land-related aspects of micro-finance. Further, there are a number of instances where Islamic principles and practices relevant to land are similar to widely accepted universal approaches and can therefore be used to enhance tenure security, land use planning and land management. There is no single unified and systematic field of Islamic land law. However, those working with Muslim communities recognize key features drawn from various Islamic fields relating to land. Protection of property rights in general is recognized in Islamic law (Shari'a) as a priority and state policy must operate to promote it. Islamic law is therefore an important factor influencing land tenure in Muslim societies. Whether or not their states 'officially' implement Islamic principles, land tenure regimes and concepts are generally constructed and realized with reference to the Shari'a.
Para 35 of the New Urban Agenda stated the commitment of member states 'to promoting, at the appropriate level of government, including subnational and local government, increased security of tenure for all, recognizing the plurality of tenure types, and to developing fit-for-purpose and age-, gender- and environment-responsive solutions within the continuum of land and property rights, with particular attention to security of land tenure for women as key to their empowerment, including through effective administrative systems.'
This Side event will share how application and implementation of Islamic approaches to land administration, urban planning, and land-related aspects of micro-finance that could empowers women to secure access and control of their land, contribute to ensure sustainable and inclusive urban economies, by leveraging the agglomeration benefits of well-planned urbanization, including high productivity, competitiveness and innovation; by promoting full and productive employment and decent work for all; by ensuring the creation of decent jobs and equal access for all to economic and productive resources and opportunities.