The deputy chief executive of the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) is confident that the UAE will be upgraded to emerging market status this December when Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) makes its decision on which markets to include.

“We as a market had a checklist, we saw the gaps and filled those gaps. The problem was the process delivery versus payment (DVP) system and that needed physical work from our side. But we have done it very fast and we succeeded. The custodians are settling their trades by DVP,” says Rashed al-Baloushi.

MSCI’s upgrade would be a catalyst for the market…recognising the progress of the [UAE] economy
Nadi Barghouti, Shuaa Asset Management

In June, MSCI postponed its decision to upgrade the UAE and Qatar from frontier market to emerging market status to give additional time for feedback from participants and to assess the impact of the changes made by both exchanges in the hope of getting an upgrade.

An upgrade could attract millions of dollars to the country’s bourses. “MSCI’s upgrade would be a catalyst for the market. It was positive it wasn’t delayed until next year. An upgrade is not a vital point; it is more of a confidence booster rather than liquidity booster. It’s recognising the progress of the economy this country has been working on,” says Nadi Barghouti, head of UAE-based Shuaa Asset Management.