Tadawul to float by year-end

12 May 2006
The Capital Market Authority (CMA) says it is preparing to launch by the end of 2006 the Saudi Arabian Financial Exchange (SAFX), which will be the first bourse in the Middle East to become a publicly-listed company.
'SAFX will become a private sector corporation based on the leading-edge international model for exchanges,' CMA chairman Jammaz al-Suhaimi said at the Euromoney conference in Riyadh on 9 May. 'The exchange will have a mandate to develop a range of products and services that are vital to the development of our capital markets and the competitiveness of our securities industry.'

Under the terms of the Capital Market Law issued in 2003, the CMA, Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) and the Public Investment Fund (PIF) are valuing the Saudi stock exchange, known as Tadawul, with a view to listing at least part of the company before the end of the year.

Tadawul is the largest stock exchange in the Middle East and the 11th largest in the world in terms of trading volumes, according to the World Federation of Stock Exchanges. However, the dramatic performance of the bourse in the last two years has been undermined by a major correction that has seen panic selling wipe some 39 per cent off the Tadawul All-Share Index (TASI) since the start of the year.


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