Bahrain is host to a thriving mutual funds industry. The first overseas mutual funds started being marketed in Bahrain during the 1980s, and the first Bahrain domiciled scheme was launched in 1984.
The first Collective Investment Undertaking (“CIU”) rules were issued by the CBB in 1992, which were revamped in June 2007, by the launch of the CIU Module as part of Volume 6 of the CBB Rulebook. The CIU rules were further revamped and issued in April 2012, under a separate Volume of CBB Rulebook (Volume 7). In March 2022, the CBB has relaunched the CIU rules under the completely novated “Module CIU”. The Module CIU provides rules and regulations pertaining to the authorization/notification processes, as well as the supervision regime of locally domiciled and overseas domiciled CIUs in Bahrain.
As at the end of October 2023, the number of mutual funds stood at 1672 funds, of which 62 funds were Bahrain domiciled, compared to 1734 funds as of October 2022. The number of Sharia compliant funds stood at 111 as of October 2023.
The net asset value (NAV) of those funds totaled US$ 10.651 billion as of the end of June 2023, reflecting a 9.94% decrease compared to US$ 11.826 billion the previous year. Of the total NAV, US$ 4.389 billion is invested in locally incorporated funds, and US$ 1.412 billion in Sharia compliant funds.