16 Aug - 3 min read
The recently launched GO+ investment feature in Touch ‘n Go (TNG) eWallet is now officially shariah-compliant. This is following the conversion of its underlying fund – the Principal e-Cash Fund managed by Principal Asset Management Berhad – from a conventional unit trust scheme to an Islamic one.
With this latest update, investors should receive a new prospectus for the Principal e-Cash Fund, which will replace and supersede the earlier non-shariah-compliant prospectus (dated 15 March 2021). Essentially, a fund is considered to be shariah-compliant when it is governed by the requirement of shariah laws. This includes excluding investment in the sale of items not permitted in Islam religion, such as alcohol, tobacco, non-halal provisions, gambling, or weaponry. It also requires going through certain processes such as the purifying of interest through charitable donations and annual shariah audits.
As such, one of the key changes that will be made to the Principal e-Cash Fund is the types of investments that it is permitted to tap into. Here is a summary of the types of investment permitted for the fund before and after this update takes place (based on an earlier announcement by Principal Asset Management Berhad):
|Previous prospectus (dated 15 March 2021)||Replacement Prospectus (New)|
|– Money market instruments traded in or under the rules of an eligible market|
– Deposits (including cash (at bank) and placement of deposits)
– Debt instruments
– Any other form of investment as may be permitted by the SC from time to time
|– Islamic money market instrument|
– Islamic deposits
– Any other form of shariah-compliant investments as may be permitted by the SC from time to time
Aside from this, Principal Asset Management has appointed Amanie Advisors Sdn Bhd as the shariah advisor for the Principal e-Cash Fund. Additionally, the fund’s benchmark will be switched from CIMB Bank Ringgit Malaysia Basic Savings Account Top Tier Rate to CIMB Islamic Bank Ringgit Malaysia Basic Savings Account-i Top Tier Rate.
The updated FAQ for TNG GO+ further offered advice for Muslim users who utilised the feature before it was made shariah-compliant. “Muslim unit holders who have been made aware of previous investments and received returns on their GO+ account before it was made Shariah-compliant are advised to purify their returns at their own discretion,” it clarified. Briefly, the purification process for such gains can be done via selected channels, such as channelling the proceeds towards charitable causes. The FAQ also noted that the Fund does not pay zakat on behalf of Muslim investors, which means they will need to pay zakat on their own.
Despite these changes, there will be no amendments made to the fee structure charged to its investors, so GO+ users can be rest assured that they will not need to pay more fees to use the e-wallet investment feature. Returns will also continue to be credited daily, although the fund house did not mention if there will be a change in the projected daily return rate. Previously, TNG eWallet noted that the rate is projected at 1.47% p.a., although the indicative return rate will vary from day to day depending on market conditions.
(Source: TNG eWallet)
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