Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, ruler of Dubai, has announced plans to transform the emirate into a global centre for the issuance, listing and trading in sukuk (Islamic bonds).

The move in the first part of Dubai’s plan to paint itself as the global capital of the Islamic economy, which will attempt to position it as a standard-setter for Islamic finance, arbitration centre for resolving disputes related to Islamic contracts, and boosting production of halal food.

Dubai is aiming to get a share of the Islamic finance industry, which is expected to worth around $2.6 trillion by 2015, according to US ratings agency Standard & Poor’s.