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Home arrow Business & Finance arrow The art of RF (riba-free) Islamic banking and finance



The RF banker's first and most important responsibility is to serve people in his or her community and to treat them like members of his/her own family. This means knowing the husband, the wife, the children, and the grandchildren. It means that the RF banker becomes familiar with the goals and objectives of the family, who will share with him their dreams and aspirations and view him/her as their financial doctor or expert. It is the responsibility of the RF banker to understand and become familiar with the family's financial situation in great detail, to help the family arrange and position their financial statement (i.e., assets and liabilities and income and expenses), to help the family improve their financial position and status by articulating their dreams and goals and then by restructuring their financial situation when needed. One example is to reduce the family's riba-based debts and liabilities and enhance the value of their assets using the RF discipline to help them lead a true RF lifestyle. It is the responsibility of the RF banker to make sure that the family is well positioned and prepared for a comfortable retirement, for unexpected emergencies, and for saving for college expenses for their children and grandchildren. In doing so, the RF banker's prime passion should be the well-being of the family, not the commission or fee generated from the relationship.

In dealing with our own families of customers, we, the RF bankers will always seek what is best for them. The RF banker would always try to minimize the fees and expenses incurred and charged by the bank and make sure that each transaction is looked upon as an honest-to-goodness investment, with good analysis and prudence exercised to ensure that the purchase of an investment and the taking of credit make economic sense and is based on RF rules. The RF banker also must have in his or her heart the best interests of the community. She/he will be active in all of its civic activities, including its places of worship of all faiths in which he or she is positioned to serve the worshippers, the school Parent-Teacher Association, the city and town services, and other voluntary activities. The RF banker should be a firm believer in speaking the truth, never betraying or compromising trust, and respecting privacy and confidentiality.

At TARIBA, we set a number of covenants, which we called the “10 Golden Rules for an RF Banker.” The following is a listing of these rules:

1. Do not speculate with people's money and trust. We place people's trust above everything, including our own interest.

2. Fulfill our promises. We never promise what we cannot deliver.

3. Respect money — money “respects” people who respect it. We are careful with our costs. We keep them to a minimum.

4. Do not forget our moral responsibility to local communities. While our most important concern is to achieve the highest return for our shareholders, we never forget our moral responsibility to local communities. We measure our success by return on assets and by the number of households we have helped open up to serve in an RF way and to facilitate their goal of leading an RF lifestyle.

5. Do not discriminate. We do not discriminate, regardless of skin color, language, ethnic background, religious beliefs, age, or gender.

6. Invest in our clients. We do not look at our business as a money-renting operation. We invest with and in people.

7. Be socially responsible. We do not finance alcohol- or tobacco-related businesses, gambling, manufacture of harmful products to people and the environment or any unethical activities.

8. Be sensitive about who we deal with. We promise to check our depositors, clients, and customers to make sure of the validity of the sources of their funds and the type and quality of their businesses.

9. Be conservative. Our most important RF investment objective is preservation of capital and keeping up with inflation.

10. Look at our coworkers as our partners. We aspire to make each one of our coworkers as an important part of the business.

  • [1] These are posted on the following websites: and
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