Kuwait appoints first head of new stock market regulator

08 September 2010

Head of Kuwait exchange appointed as regulator chief

Kuwait’s cabinet has passed a draft decree appointing Saleh al-Falah, general manager of the country’s stock exchange, as chairman of the new capital markets regulator.

“The draft decree appoints Saleh al-Falah as the chairman of the regulator’s board of commissioners,” reported state-run news agency Kuna on 8 September, citing Kuwait’s commerce minister Ahmed al-Haroun.   

The appointment of the head should have taken place in May, according to the law approving the formation of the regulator, which was passed in February this year.

At least 18 candidates turned down the post due to its stringent conditions, which include a five-year ban on all investments by the regulator head and his family members (MEED 12:8:10).

It is hoped the long-awaited market watchdog will help combat the irregularities in disclosure and insider trading, which have plagued the Gulf’s second largest exchange.  

The regulator will have the power to impose fines and prison sentences of up to five years for violators through a special tribunal, as well as overseeing initial public offerings (IPOs), mergers and acquisitions.   

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