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The first government sukuk was listed on the London Stock Exchange as Britain reaffirmed its reputation as the main western centre for Islamic finance.

Bahrain chose London to list its second Islamic bond as it sought to encourage more European and conventional investors to buy the paper. The Gulf kingdom listed its first sukuk in Luxembourg in 2004.

Significantly, more than 50 per cent of the paper was bought by European investors with the rest mainly bought by banks based in the Middle East.

Rizwan Kanji, head of Middle Eastern capital markets at Norton Rose, the law firm that helped structure the transaction, said: "You can attract more investors, particularly in Europe, if you list in London.

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