Abu Dhabi exchange makes moves to attract foreign investment

05 May 2011

Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange becomes first exchange in the Middle East to receive ISO certification

The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) has become the first exchange in the Middle East to receive an international standards organisation (ISO) certification, a move that will help it attract more investors, according to Rashed al-Baloushi, deputy chief executive and director of operations at ADX.

“It is a positive sign to investors, but it is only a small part of a bigger picture,” says Al-Baloushi.

From January 2011 until the end of April, 550 new foreign investors opened an account with ADX and net position of foreign investors amounted to AED155m ($42m).

“The market is very sensitive to crises, but even then we have noticed growth, foreign investors are buying more,” says Al-Baloushi.

UAE’s economy grew by 3.2 per cent in 2010 and it is set to grow by 3.3 per cent this year according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Al-Baloushi predicts further growth for 2012, which will add value to ADX.

ADX currently has 887 investors. There have been three initial public offerings since the beginning of 2011, a trend that Al-Baloushi hopes will continue. “This is a very positive signal, companies are seeing the potential to go public, which will generate more liquidity to secondary markets,” he says.

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