Zakat as one of the pillars of Islam is considered capable in advancing the Islamic economics development, bring the ummah to a prosperous and balanced life. Not to mention Indonesia as the most populous Muslim nation in the world, making the country has a high potential on zakat for more than 200 Trillion a year.

This was stated in the event of BAZNAS Development Forum (BDF) held at Graha Yatim Mandiri, Stainim Campus Sidoarjo, East Java on Wednesday (27/2).

With the theme "Considering the Role of Zakat in the Indonesian Islamic Economics Master Plan 2025", the event was presented by the CEO of BAZNAS, Arifin Purwakananta and Director of Inclusive Finance, Religious Social Funds and Islamic Microfinance, The National Committee of Islamic Finance (KNKS), Ahmad Juwaini as the speaker. Also present were the Director of Zakat and Waqf Empowerment, Ministry of Religious Affairs, M. Fuad Nasar and the CEO of Yatim Mandiri, Achmad Zaini Faisol.

Arifin said, zakat is the concept of building a happy community by sharing. The concept is the foundation derived from new ideas in muamalah that can bring welfare to community.

"BAZNAS hopes that zakat can become a major player of Islamic economics, not merely as a supporting factor but rather as a major factor in developing Islamic economics," he said.

BAZNAS as a locomotive of zakat movement in Indonesia, plays a significant role in encouraging zakat as the major part of Islamic economics. According to Arifin, the main challenges are how to improve the overall welfare and alleviate ummah from poverty.

"We hope that the role of BAZNAS can be expanded to the extent that it can make zakat as a solution, not just an alternative funding for development or improving welfare," he said.

Director of Inclusive Finance, Religious Social Funds and Islamic Microfinance, The National Committee of Islamic Finance (KNKS), Ahmad Juwaini said that zakat has a role in the development or developing Islamic economics. With zakat the community can be assisted and alleviated from poverty.

"When the people are assisted with zakat fund. They can open businesses and be helped, while at the same time strengthen the Islamic and halal industries, "he said.

He added, Indonesia is currently in the effort for being the center of the world's islamic economics, one of which is in the field of zakat, how to make zakat institutions stronger, more transparent, accountable and its programs are increasingly effective in supporting welfare and poverty reduction in Indonesia .

Fuad Nasar said, zakat is more than just an islamic financial instrument as has been commonly understood.

"Zakat is a fundamental factor that determines the achievement of ummah welfare that is aimed through the Islamic economics and finance movement," he said.

Achmad Zaini Faisol welcomed the collaboration in supporting the awakening of zakat in Indonesia, in order be able to place zakat as the main force of Islamic economics.

BAZNAS Development Forum (BDF) is a discussion forum to encourage various ideas, studies, and cooperation of the Indonesian Zakat Management Organization which is held every month and has been started since April 2018.