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 January 2023, the number of mutual funds stood at 1742 funds, of which 64 funds were Bahrain domiciled, compared to 1705 funds as of January 2022. The number of Sharia compliant funds stood at 103 as of January 2023.
The net asset value (NAV) of those funds totaled US$ 11.502 billion as of the end of September 2022, reflecting a 11.26% increase compared to US$ 10.338 billion the previous year. Of the total NAV, US$ 5.473 billion is invested in locally incorporated funds, and US$ 1.151 billion in Sharia compliant funds.