Emerging Jordan 2003 by Oxford Business Group
The Oxford Business Group issued its annual book about Jordan entitled Emerging Jordan 2003 with a comprehensive political, economic and tourist review of Jordan. The in-depth study reflected a clear optimism regarding the economic future of Jordan within a series of interviews held by the Group with His Majesty King Abdullah the II, the Prime Minister Mr. Ali Abu Ragheb and a host of other ministers, specialists, economists and researchers. The publication contains information about the Jordanian capital market, a detailed analysis of the ASE, its developments and the services it offers to dealers in securities and domestic and international investors. Based in London, Oxford Business Group is a consultant and publication firm specialized in emerging markets in the Mediterranean, the Middle East and Asia
MoU between the JSC and its Malaysian counterpart
A Memorandum of Understanding MoU was signed in Kuala Lumpur between the JSC represented by its chairman, Dr. Bassam Saket and the Malaysian Securities Commission represented by its Chairman Mr. Ali Abdel-Qader. The MoU aims at enhancing cooperation and coordination between the two parties in various fields, and exchanging of legal and technical information with a view to developing both capital markets and stepping up investor protection. The focus is on expert exchange to promote the performance and activities of both commissions, their regulatory and legislative framework in order to enhance the respect of law and legislation in force, restrict illegal practices in the markets of both countries, increase disclosure of required information to investors, cooperate in training, exchange of information on securities, registration and listing, monitor capital market performance, and deposit, settlement and clearance institutions, and to develop appropriate regulations for them.
Cabinet approves the Securities Law for the year 2002
The Council of Ministers approved the bill of Securities for the year 2002. The new law brings in several developments, including permission to set up other stock exchanges alongside the ASE, the possibility of forming an independent investor protection fund, stricter ethical and professional codes, and a more stringent observance of the rule of law. The JSC was given broader authorities to stop disposal of property of offenders and to impose stricter penalties, as well as the power to impose financial sanctions. The SDC's role was properly defined and it was declared the sole institution responsible for the registration, settlement and clearance of securities, and the Brokers' Guarantee Fund will be transferred from the ASE to the SDC. The new Law also made it obligatory to safeguard clients and to separate security company accounts, property and assets from client accounts. It provided the legal framework for establishing investment funds of an independent legal entity. The new developments aim at increasing capital market efficiency, investor protection, prevention from offenses and penalizing offenders. The new law shall enter into effect as soon as it is published in the Official Gazette.
FIBV Yearly Survey
The latest figures of the annual survey that the FIBV conducted of its members' legal structures, sources of income and expenditure showed a noticeable increase in the number of exchanges who demutualized. A study of the available figures indicates that the percentage of private limited-liability exchange companies that are mainly owned by their members has dropped from 44% at end of 2000 to 35% by end of 2001, while the percentage of exchanges that have been privatized and listed went up from 25% and 13% in 2000 to 28% and 18% in 2001 respectively. The percentage of other member exchanges of various legal forms (owned by members, or wholly or partially owned by governments) represented some 19.6%. The major international developments in the securities industry, the growing external competition amongst exchanges, the development of trading systems and Internet trading have obliged exchanges to demutualize .
24th Session of the Union of Arab Stock Exchanges
Represented by its chairman, H.E. Mr. Mohammed Saleh Horani, and the Executive Manager assistant Mr. Nader Azar, the ASE attended the 24th session of the Union of Arab Stock Exchanges held in Dubai during the period 2-4 November. The Board of the Union held a meeting along the sidelines, and H.E. Mr. Horani chaired a session during which several presentations were made on the economic and financial repercussions of money laundering and the new trends in financial risk management, and another one on the September 11 implications to international and Arab stock exchanges.
Lecture at the Masqat Stock Exchange
The Capital Market Authority of Sultanate of Oman hosted Mr. Jalil Tarif who gave a lecture on “Modern Developments in the Securities Industry”, attended by the vice chairman of the Authority, the Manager of Muscat Exchange and a host of officials from the Authority's senior management. His lecture tackled the situation of Arab capital markets, their relatively small market capitalization and short liquidity position in relation to international markets, the challenges faced by said markets, the slow pace of privatization in Arab countries and the corresponding indolence of capital markets. Mr. Tarif talked about investment opportunities in these markets and their readiness to attract foreign investments in the aftermath of September 11, the major infrastructural reforms undertaken by them, their adoption of high-tech trading, deposit, settlement and clearance systems, their awareness programs on the importance of capital markets and the fact that they provide appropriate tools for all types of investors. Mr. Tarif went over the various Arab efforts towards establishing a Unified Arab Exchange and the steps taken to set up the Arab Clearance Institution. He touched upon the events of September 11 and the ensuing substantial changes, particularly in relation to corporate governance, money laundering and its linkage to financing terrorism. He also presented the latest developments in the legal set-up of international exchanges, the growing trend towards privatization and turning state-owned exchanges into profit-making shareholding companies, not to mention mergers of major international stock exchanges.
Securities Depository Center New Board
The Securities Depository Center's General Assembly elected the members of its second Board during its October 24th meeting. 167 members from financial services companies licensed to operate as financial brokers and from public share holding companies were present. Rajai Kossous and Kamel Zira were elected for the former and Waleed Azab, Ayman Abu Shanab and Mohammed Musmar for the latter. The JSC shall shortly approve the results of elections and appoint the two remaining members from among legal, financial and economic experts from the private sector.
Jordan Investment Fund
Deutsh Bank, Atlas Investment Group and Fursan Group launched a first of its kind Jordanian fund know as “Jordan Investment Fund”, at the initiative of His Majesty King Abdullah the Second. The purpose of this Fund is to use privatization proceeds to supply needed liquidity. This closed-ended fund aims at investing in Jordanian private owned companies, benefiting from the Free Trade Agreement with the USA and other free trade initiatives, with a view to improving the financial position of targeted companies, either by mergers or by restructuring and providing them with the necessary finance to reach their targets. The Fund's initial capital is $50 million, the Jordanian government has pledged to invest $20 million and the remainder shall come from institutional and individual investors from inside and outside the Middle East.
BorzaMed Mediterranean Exchange
ASE represented by its Executive Manager Mr. Jalil Tarif has joint the ceremony of signing the Cooperation Protocol between Tunisia, Malta, and Cairo and Alexandria stock exchanges to establish a Mediterranean stock exchange named BorzaMed. The Protocol was signed in Malta in September 14th, 2002, and was attended by Malta's Minister of Finance, the Tunisian Ambassador in Malta, the ex-chairman of the World Federation of Exchanges (FIBV) as the project consultant, and the managers of the exchanges, which are parties in the project. The objectives of this project is to provide a forum and mechanism for cooperation between the parties as well as developing the securities markets in the Mediterranean and the Middle East regions to enable these exchanges to compete internationally, with a view to establish cross-border trading between these parties in addition to enlarging capital markets in these regions. According to this protocol a working group will be formed including representatives of each member, this group will be responsible to prepare a report within one year on the feasibility of the project's objectives and on the proposed plan for the fulfillment of the Borazamed objectives.
Choosing Settlement Banks
The SDC is in the process of selecting settlement banks to be accredited upon the introduction of Delivery Versus Payment concept. A document is to be circulated to all local and foreign banks operating in the Kingdom. Qualified banks that fulfill the conditions of stipulated in the document shall be chosen to facilitate price settlement of traded securities among brokers via banks accounts that said brokers would hold with the relevant banks. Having been fully completed, the first phase of Payment Versus Delivery is set to start soon. The final phase is expected to be implemented by the first half of the coming year, coinciding with the adoption of the necessary legislations, which secures the setting up of a Settlement Guarantee Fund within the SDC and the adoption of by-laws for said Fund and the deposit of securities.
Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS)
The Central Bank of Jordan has initiated phase one of RTGS-JO. This project links accredited banks to their central bank accounts and enable them to conduct clearance and settlement operations in an efficient, effective and safe manner. This system transfers funds in inter-bank, bank-client and bank-CBJ arrangements. Payment orders to the beneficiary are executed within 3 to 6 minutes via the SWIFT network, and the system is connected to the automatic check clearance system. It can also be connected to all clearance systems, which shall raise the efficiency of fund management activities at banks, reinvigorate the capital market and shore up confidence in the Jordanian financial system domestically and abroad.
Meeting Arab Media
Dr. Bassam Al-Saket, Chairman of the JSC, members of the Board of Commissioners, as well as board members and the executive managers of both the ASE and the Securities Depository Center (SDC) met with representatives of the daily, weekly and specialized Arab newspapers. Dr. Al-Saket explained to them the latest developments of the Jordanian capital market, its outstanding achievements and the legal and technical developments over the last two years. He outlined the need for close cooperation amongst all sectors and the capital market institutions in order to enhance the role of this market, which is a vital one in any national economy. Mr. Jalil Tarif gave them a brief explanation about the trading system in the ASE as represented by the electronic trading system and showed them the ASE facilities.
Renewal of Jordan Securities Commission JSC Board
The Cabinet resolved to renew the term of the members of the JSC Board of Commissioners for five years. That includes H.E. Dr. Bassam Al-Saket as Chairman, H.E. Dr. Tayseer Abdel Jaber as Vice Chairman, and Mr. Safwan Batayneh and Mr. Mohammed Tash as members. The resolution brought in Mr. Bassam Asfoor as a new Board member.
Performance of public shareholding companies during the first half of 2002
The semi annual results of 127 public shareholding companies during the first six months of 2002 appeared an improvement, these companies represent 90% a percentage of the total market capitalization of the ASE, where the net income before tax show a growth up to 5.5% with the figure standing at JD 202 million as of end of the first half of 2002, against JD 191.5 million for the same period of 2001. The assets of said companies have gone up by 6.3% hitting JD 22.7 billion at end of the first half of this year against JD 21.3 billion by the end of 2001.
Jordanian ambassadors in abroad visit the capital market institutions
As part of their tours and visits to economic bodies abroad for the purposes of promoting Jordan from tourist and economic angles and to attract foreign investments, a number of Jordanian ambassadors to Arab and foreign countries visited the Jordanian capital market institutions. H.E. Dr. Bassam Al-Saket, Chairman of the JSC, reviewed the structural adjustments and the developments of the Jordanian capital market and responded to their relevant questions. Mr. Tarif, the executive manager of ASE, gave a presentation on the recent developments witnessed by the ASE, in particular the shift from manual trading to the electronic trading system. The ambassadors has been kept abreast of the developments in the JSC and the Securities Depository Center (SDC).
Jordan In Foreign Press
The financial and business magazine Forbes published an article on Jordan. It portrayed the political and economic conditions lived under His Majesty King Abdullah the II, the economic challenges and the external and internal political conditions. The article described the economic developments and reforms that took place in Jordan over the last few years in terms of economic development, trade liberalization, qualified industrial zones and the quantitative and technical growth of the capital market. The article showed a picture of the Investors Gallery that was inaugurated by the ASE last May.
ASE chairs the FEAS Marketing and Information Committee meeting
Mr. Sami Hattab, head of the ASE's Research and External Relations Department, chaired the Federations of Euro-Asian Stock Exchanges FEAS Marketing and Information Committee meeting held in Baku, Atherbeijan in July. The meeting discussed many themes including the evaluation of the FEAS annual book as a marketing tool, the updating of the FEAS website, the possible use of the website for announcing IPOs in member states and news of companies within member stock exchanges. Another potential use of the website could be to disseminate trading information available at the FEAS Information Center. The ASE also attended the meetings of both the IT and the Regulations Committees. It is worth noting that Jordan is one of the 23 member states in the FEAS.
Syrian delegation from Arab Academy for Financial & Banking Sciences visits Jordan capital market institutions
A Syrian delegation taking part in a financial brokerage course organized by the Arab Academy for Financial and Banking Sciences visited the ASE. Mr. Tarif gave them a detailed presentation on capital markets, the importance of emerging markets and their role in investment activities. He went through the various types of capital markets, the Jordanian case and the qualitative and quantitative developments in the Jordanian capital market. The delegation also visited the JSC and the SDC.
H.R.H Princess Iman Bint Al-Hussein pays tribute to the ASE for its support of the Arab Children's conference
On 23-29 July, 2002 the Twenty-Second Arab Children's Conference entitled “Dialogue between Generations” took place in Amman under the patronage of Her Majesty Queen Noor Al-Hussein. Her Royal Highness princess Iman Bint Al-Hussein, on behalf of the Queen, handed over the conference's award for supporting institutions to the ASE during the ceremony.
News of Arab and International Bourses
- The New York Stock Exchange has announced its intention to build a second headquarters in the New York suburbs quite away from Wall Street for security reasons. This came in response to the September 11 events and the vacillating and tense mood that has overshadowed tradings since the unraveling of the gigantic corporations' scandal.
- The price shoots system has just been put in operation on the Cairo Stock Exchange within a series of new procedures to be applied sequentially over the coming few weeks. The new package includes a system for trading by margin, and a definition of safe custody to safeguard client property and deals. These new procedure aim at stimulating and developing the Egyptian stock market to be an essential regional center.
US Congress passes a bill on corporate reform
President George W. Bush approved a new bill on corporate reform which toughens punishment on fraud in corporations and improves audit control, in response to the latest wave of scandals involving major US corporations starting with Enron through WorldCom, that has taken over the US markets in particular along with most of the European and Asian markets.The bill makes fraud in securities a felony punishable to up to 25 years in prison. An audit council shall be set up to oversee the accounting sector and ban auditors from giving their clients paid consultancies to avoid any conflict of interest. It requires corporations to disclose any material change in their accounts right on the day following said change. It is to be noted that the latest bankruptcy wave that engulfed gigantic US corporations has wreaked havoc in investor confidence and put the whole US economy on the line.
Amman Stock Exchange in the International Press
Suddeutsche Zeitung a daily German newspaper published on 14/6/2002 a big colored picture for Amman Stock Exchange (Investor Gallery) on the front of its first page and wrote the following comment” Jordanian investors are keeping a close eye on developments of the ASE. Share prices continued to rise throughout the past week in the Jordanian capital, with a particular stand out on Thursday. Experts are anticipating huge profits in the make, given the price hike to its highest level since six months. This newspaper has its affect on the economists and politicians and the number of its daily issues exceeded 430,000.
The Arab Monetary Fund Starts its Daily Web Coverage of Arab Financial Markets
On the 10th of June, the web page of the Arab Monetary Fund www.amf.org.ae flashed its first daily coverage of performance indicators of the Arab financial markets connected to its database, namely Jordan, Bahrain, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, Lebanon, Egypt and Morocco. Such a step, undertaken with the close cooperation of the Arab markets, draws its importance from the fact that effective performance data are accessed from a single source on a daily basis. It simply fulfills the AMF's aim of enabling all market operators to access reliable data in an easy and prompt manner, which would facilitate investment decisions with such a close watch over market developments.
First Meeting of the Arab Exchanges' Board
Mr. Jalil Tarif, the executive manager and Mr. Raja'I Koussous, an ASE Board Member, represented the ASE at the First Meeting of the Board of Arab Exchanges, held on June 17-19 in Tunisia. (The Union of Arab Stock Exchanges was restructured into three boards; the Board of Stock Exchanges, the Board of Supervisory Commissions and the Clearance and Deposit Board). The meeting discussed the latest events on Arab Stock Markets. Mr. Tarif presented the legislative and institutional changes of the Jordanian market and the restructuring process that started in 1997 with the promulgation of the new Securities Law that separated the supervisory and the executive roles. He went over the technical developments of ASE and noted in particular the Electronic Trading System, Remote Trading and data dissemination through the Website and data providers. Several working papers were presented on developments made in other Arab exchanges, and the participants viewed stock of the latest developments related to the setting up of the Unified Arab Stock Exchange, as an important tool to open up Arab markets to each other, bring together the major and most active Arab company shares within this Arab Exchange, encourage the inter flow of Arab capitals and to attract investments.
Round Table Discussion on Corporate Governance
The ASE represented by its Executive Manager Mr. Jalil Tarif took part in the Round Table Discussion held by Al-Urdun Al-Jadid Research Center on Corporate Governance. The key-note paper entitled “Corporate Governance and Financial Sector” presented by Mr. Tarif dealt with the management of shareholding companies and the rules and regulations that must govern their business, in respect of shareholders' rights, role of the Board of Directors, role of stake holders in company management, and transparency and disclosure of financial and essential information. He also tackled some international and Jordanian experiences in company management and how compatible Jordanian rules and regulations are with international ones.
Lecture at Petra University
Mr. Jalil Tarif gave a lecture at Petra Private University, which was attended by several professors, heads of departments and students. The event came as part of the ASE's policy of raising awareness of the role that it conducts in the national economy, in terms of bolstering domestic and foreign investments and increasing the economic growth. He viewed the ASE's achievements over the recent years and the legislative and technical institutional developments as well as the quantitative improvements.
Public Shareholding Companies Performance During 2001
The performance of the Jordanian shareholding companies during 2001 was outstanding comparing to year 2000. The annual reports of 110 listed companies, representing 85% of the ASE total market capitalization, showed a 6% growth in the total assets, comparing to the year 2000, amounting JD 22 billion, also showed a growth in the shareholders' equity of 9% amounting JD 3 billion. Net Income after tax has increased from JD 240 million for year 2000 to JD 302 million for 2001 of about 26%, as well as the cash dividends which was JD 102 million for year 2000 and increased by 21% in year 2001 amounting JD 124 million.
Sixth Meeting of the Arab Business Community
Under the patronage of the Syrian President, Dr. Bashar Al-Assad, the Sixth Arab Business Community Meeting took place last April, organized by the Federation of Arab Businessmen and the Syrian Business Association with the motto of Homing Arab Investments in Arab Countries. The ASE was represented by its executive manager, Mr. Jalil Tarif who presented a paper on the Arab capital markets and the challenges ahead, and called for braving such challenges. His paper underlined the remarkable technical developments that have been witnessed on Arab capital markets over the previous few years, particularly with regards to trading, settlement and clearance systems, with most Arab countries shifting from manual to electronic trading that secure more efficient, fair and transparent trading. In terms of settlement and clearance systems, some Arab markets are now using advanced settlement systems such as tight-coupled settlement in Saudi Arabia, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, while other markets now have electronic trading systerms and depository and transfer centers.Mr. Tarif asserted that Arab capital markets are giving a lot of importance to dissemination, and a number of them are displaying live trading information on their websites and through data vendors. He also tackled the institutional and legislative situation of Arab capital markets, and stressed that numerous states have realized the importance of developing institutional frameworks for their markets and regulating their financial markets, some have separated the supervisory from the executive roles, while some are still undertaking the two roles. Mr. Tarif also touched upon traded instruments on Arab markets and explained that most markets still limit them to shares and bonds, while some others have witnessed the entry of some new instruments. In quantitative terms, Arab markets are 17 in 15 Arab countries, with their market capitalization reaching some $163 billion as of end 2001, representing 33% of the GDP.Several papers were presented dealing with various issues, such as investment environment in Arab countries, privatization with some live examples cited, Arab economic integration, disclosure and transparency in Arab capital markets.
First International Finance & Business Forum & Exhibition
The ASE is participating in the First International Finance & Business Forum & Exhibition to be held in Dubai towards the midst of May. It will present a paper on Jordan's capital market and the ASE, covering the legislative and technical developments over the recent years and the future of the Jordanian capital market. The ASE will have a corner where its regular and annual releases and publications along with introductory materials on the ASE and the ASE website will be presented. Participation in this event draws its importance from the fact that it is the largest gathering of specialized merchant banks, Arab and regional financial institutions, investment and development funds and the major capital markets in the Arab world.
Scientific Week of the Business Administration Faculty/ University of Jordan
The Executive Manager of ASE took part in the Scientific Week of the University of Jordan's Business Administration Faculty. The lecture he gave at the Faculty, before the Head of the Faculty, the Head of the Finance Section and a number of professors and students, laid out the latest legislative and institutional developments on the Jordanian capital market and the restructuring process that started in 1997 with the promulgation of the new Securities Law. Mr. Tarif stressed that the capital market has witnessed major changes in the field of disclosure, and said that implementation of the electronic trading system has increased market efficiency and fair trading and lowered costs at the same time.
Workshop at the Strategic Studies Center
Mr. Jalil Tarif participated in the workshop that was held at the Strategic Studies Center in University of Jordan on the economic implications of the Palestinian Uprising on Jordan's economy. The workshop was attended by a host of officials and representatives of public and private economic circles. Mr. Tarif laid out the negative repercussions of the Israeli incursions into Palestinian Authority areas on the ASE in particular and Jordan in general.
Training Program on Capital Markets
In cooperation with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and support from the USAID through AMIR Program, the JSC held a specialized training program on capital markets and supervision, tailored to capital markets needs in Arab countries. Experts and speakers from the SEC gave lectures and discussed topics related to capital market surveillance and supervision, regulatory frameworks of said markets and their implementation mechanism. The aim of the program was to improve capital market efficiency and to make a qualitative leap in performance, to develop market legislation according to the latest international practice and standards and to exchange experience among participants.
Capital Market News
- In cooperation with the JSC and AMIR Program, the Financial Brokers Training Program started at the headquarters of the Financial and Banking Studies Institute. The Program aims at improving the academic and professional skills of capital market dealers and operators. The Program includes a hands-on exercise on the Electronic Trading System. By the end of the Program the participants will get a license from the JSC to perform as financial brokers, once they pass the pre-required examination.
- The JSC, in cooperation with the British Aid Program and through Capital Markets Partner, held a seminar on the implementation of rules and regulations governing the capital market. British securities experts gave lectures on topics such as implementation of rules and regulations in capital markets, abidance by the Code of Conduct, and customer data and information handed out to investors by broker firms.
Training program for Chartered Financial Analyst CFA
In February, the JSC in cooperation with AMIR Program, which is financed by the USAID, started the training program for Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA). This is one of the most specialized and professional programs in the world and is highly esteemed amongst investment operators and investors in general. The program avails academic and professional information tailored to the latest practices and experience in the financial fields and the certificate it awards is highly esteemed and of world wide recognition. Employees from ASE, JSC, and SDC participate in this program.
News of Arab & International Stock Exchanges
- The Securities and Goods Commission in the UAE has approved foreign company listing on UAE financial markets, at a minimum capital of 40 million Dirham or $ 10.88 million. Listing would be by virtue of the Chairman's decision, on the following conditions: that the company is registered in the country of origin and has been incorporated for two years, it has published two financial statements duly certified by a credited audit, it appoints a representative in the UAE, it has a minimum of 100 shareholders, and that there are no limitations in the country of origin on the transfer of share ownership to a nationality other than that of the citizen.
-The Spanish stock exchanges Madrid, Bilbao, Valencia and Barcelona today will take a big step toward going public, a move that will enable the country to play a key role in the consolidation of Europe's financial markets. Representatives for Spain's four regional stock exchanges, its clearing and settlement system, and its derivatives markets are scheduled to inaugurate a new holding company known as Bolsas & Mercados Espanoles. The annual pretax profit of about €150 million and trading volume of €3 trillion. Grouping the Spanish markets within a single umbrella company, a major accomplishment, Bolsas & Mercados is expected to be big enough that a merger with one of Europe's three largest exchanges- London, Paris and Frankfurt could help tip the balance in the race to dominate European stock trading. The Spanish stock exchanges are expected to go public sometime during the next year.
The Royal Jordanian Air Academy (RJAA) has been transformed into a public shareholding company. The transformation was the first step towards privatizing the academy in the near future the company will be either partly or wholly privatized by mid of 2002. The RJAA was established in the 1966 under the name of Aviation Club to be one of the first air training academics in the Middle East.
Abolishing Tax on Cash Dividends
For the sake of urging investing in public shareholding companies and broaden the shareholders base, the Government removed the 10% tax on cash dividends, as of January1st, 2002. It is worth mentioning that this cancelling was due to latest amendments of the Tax Income Law.Cash dividends for 2001 will be the last cash dividends that are subject to the withholding tax of 10%.
Disclosure of Financial Results
Jordan Securities Commission JSC asked public shareholding companies to disclose their primarily financial results for the year 2001 as soon as possible, according to JSC disclosure regulations which obliged shareholding companies to disclose their primarily results during 45 days after the end of their fiscal year, this step came in line with concentrating on transparency and fairness in dissemination of information for all people.
- The general assembly of Jordan Phosphate Mines has agreed, during its extra-ordinary meeting, to increase the company's capital by 10 million shares, through capitalization part of accrued mining revenues and 15% of Fertilizer Unit profits, this shares will be owned by the Government. The company's paid in capital becomes JD 75 million.- The JSC agreed to register 11.5 million shares, of Jordan Projects for Tourism Development Company capital as a newly established company. The company's first founders has covered 8.625 million shares, and the remaining 2.875 million shares were offered to public subscription.
News of Arab & International Stock Exchanges
- The Tokyo Stock Exchange, in an effort to increase the transparency of its management and build a strong organization has effectively demutualized in last November. It is worth mentioning that during the last two years many stock exchanges have been demutualized and became shareholding companies.
- Australian Stock Exchange will launch its first futures contracts. The new contracts will be based on ASX Mini 200 index and ASX Mini 50 the most widely used bench-marks in Australia. Mini index futures contracts have been successful worldwide in attracting a broad base of market participants.
- Soon Euronext will launch two new market segments the NextEconomy and the NextPrime . The NextEconomy market segment will contain companies from sectors related to the new economy , while the NextPrime segment will comprise companies from traditional sectors. All the companies included in these two segments will have undertaken to comply gradually with specific commitments for financial transparency in addition to existing local obligations. All companies traded continuously and belonging to Euronext regulated markets will be offered the possibility to join on a voluntary basis the new segments.
- Euronext and the Libson and Oporto Stock Exchange signed a Memorandum of Understanding underlining their intention to merge. It is expected that the merger will offer improved services to investors, intermediaries and issuers, and enhance value for their shareholders.
ASE Election as Head of Marketing Committee at the FEAS
The Federation of Euro-Asian Exchanges (FEAS) hold its Seventh Annual General Assembly in November 2001. During this meeting, many decisions have been taken. Among key decisions, the Chairmen of the executive committees of FEAS elected as, Tehran Stock Exchange for rules and regulations committee, Amman Stock Exchange for Marketing, and Istanbul Stock Exchange for Information Technology, the terms will run till the end of December 2003. Also two new exchanges were approved for membership in the Federation, the Muscat Securities Market and the Baku Stock Exchange. In addition, the General Assembly approved the Ukranian Stock Exchange as the hosting exchange for the 8th annual GA in 2002, and the Kyrgys Stock Exchange as the host for the 9th annual GA in 2003.