DOHA, Qatar, Oct. 23, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) 55th General Assembly & Annual Meeting concluded in Doha, Qatar, on Wednesday, with representatives from more than 60 nations in attendance for the three-day event, hosted by the Qatar Stock Exchange (QSE).
As the trade association of 64 publicly regulated stock, futures and options exchanges from all over the world, in addition to other affiliate and correspondent members, the WFE General Assembly & Annual Meeting is the world's largest gathering of exchanges.
Closing the event, Juan Pablo Cordoba, WFE Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Bolsa de Valores de Colombia said that the QSE had "set the bar high" through its successful hosting of the annual meeting, which will take place in the WFE Chairman's home country next year.
Cordoba highlighted the importance of using the Annual Meeting to exchange conversations and dialogues, and declared he was optimistic that the gathering would help inform progressive regulatory policy all around the world.
"The results from this year's conference and meeting here are motivating," Cordoba said. "We've received a very strong message from regulators and we look forward to the conversation moving from stability and risk mitigation to economic development and the growth of capital markets. For most exchanges, the past five to six years have been bombarded by regulation that is hampering markets in certain ways, and it is clear that we are moving towards a constructive phase."
He added, "There are tremendous opportunities in our value chains. We've discussed how to play a better role in SME financing, very relevant conversations for exchanges moving forward. We can't forget our essence and that is to help provide capital to the real economy."
Cordoba went on to praise the QSE as he invited Qatar to attend the 56th General Assembly & Annual Meeting, scheduled to take place in Cartagena, Colombia in 2016. "I would like to especially thank Rashid [Ali Al-Mansoori, Chief Executive Officer of Qatar Stock Exchange] for their superb organization and hospitable welcome to Doha," he said.
During a speech delivered at the opening ceremony, Mansoori stressed that the gathering was about far more than just discussions around stock exchanges. "We look at this event as an opportunity to exchange views in order to strengthen the means of cooperation between the participating exchanges, and find solutions to the difficulties and challenges that we may face, especially in light of the rapid economic, social and political changes seen throughout the world."
"As with all member exchanges, we play a pivotal role in the domestic and international economy through meeting these objectives," he continued. "We also have a responsibility for ensuring that all of our market participants can trade fairly and efficiently on our platform."
Exchange chiefs from around the world attended the General Assembly & Annual Meeting, including the heads of the major international exchange groups, the leading exchanges of the BRIC economies and leaders of WFE-affiliated organisations, such as clearing houses and the post-trade sector.
This week's meeting marked the first time that the prestigious gathering has been held in the Middle East region, and Sandy Frucher, Vice Chairman of NASDAQ, insisted that the choice of location could not have been more timely. "The engagement here that people have had has highlighted the importance of the Middle East and showed people from around the world – literally every corner of the world - how wonderfully open and engaging this area is," he enthused. "It will encourage business here as well as benefit the tourism sector."
Frucher added: "Hosting the WFE General Assembly & Annual Meeting, a worldwide gathering of diverse people, shows the drawing power of the Qatar Stock Exchange as well as the excitement that people have to visit this region."
Phupinder Gill, Member of the WFE Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer of CME Group
Commenting on the 55th Annual Meeting, Gill said: "It has been a seminal event for the WFE and the Qatar Stock Exchange have done a phenomenal job in putting it together. The panel discussions were very topical and they addressed a lot of issues that were top of mind for almost everybody, such as resolution, demutualisation, emerging markets and what the regulatory landscape will look like on a global basis and how emerging markets are going to interact with the larger exchanges around the world."
Gill added: "Qatar is one of the up-and-comers who have made effective use of their natural resources, and the Qatar Stock Exchange is developing into a world-class exchange."
Chitra Ramkrishna, Managing Director and CEO of the National Stock Exchange of India
Speaking on the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) market, Ramkrishna said: "It is definitely struggling, but an interesting field for innovation is around how not to just focus on SME equity, but also to look at, SME debt, and to consider whether some of those SME debt products, not necessarily bonds, can be brought into exchange platforms. The concerns remain the same, however interventions and innovations on what we can do in each of these has changed."
Commenting on the Annual Meeting, she said: "The panel discussions have provided a platform for global conversations. To assume that the meetings will impact one particular market is not a fair expectation, but discussions have been very useful." She added that these conversations could, in fact, have a significant impact regionally.
Regarding Qatar's role as an emerging market and a major economic player in the region, Ramkrishna said: "The Qatar Stock Exchange seem to have the right aspirations, so let's see how new policies and the local government can help in achieving them."
She added: "The General Assembly and Annual Meeting in Qatar has been very well organized, with an impressive panel of speakers."
Aydin Seyman, Executive Vice President, Borsa Istanbul
Aydin Seyman, Executive Vice President, Borsa Istanbul, said: "I have attended many WFE meetings in the past and I must say the Qatar Stock Exchange has been extremely well prepared. We continue to see the fruits of our agreement with the QSE today and had the opportunity to interact with other exchanges which were all productive."
Borsa Istanbul and QSE signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) earlier this year that outlines the framework of action of their future cooperation. Within the scope of the MoU, the two exchanges are expected to act in unison to foster information exchange, organize joint events to support the development of capital markets in Turkey and Qatar, as well as increase awareness about their respective markets reciprocally.
Ahmed Saleh Al Marhoon, Director General of the Muscat Securities Market
Commenting on the diversification of the region's economy at the panel 'Opening the Middle East's markets –The Shape of Things to Come', Ahmed Saleh Al Marhoon, Director General of the Muscat Securities Market said, "Our economies are growing and therefore we need to encourage a regulated exchange to attract investment and provide locals with the opportunity to invest in our countries."
A common theme throughout the panel included challenges for Oman, Qatar and the wider GCC region in attracting family-owned businesses and SME's as well as the need for a regional regulator.
Al Marhoon added, "Encouraging family-owned companies to go public is an objective that we have across the region. For many years our colonies were dominated by government companies and in order to facilitate and encourage them to go public we need to have an exchange that facilitates them doing so."
Note to Editors:
The 55th World Federation of Exchanges General Assembly & Annual meeting is supported by:
Platinum Sponsor: Qatar National Bank (QNB)
Gold Sponsor: Qatar Financial Centre (QFC) and Commercial Bank of Qatar (CBQ)
Silver Sponsor: Doha Bank
Official Exhibitors: Algomi Ltd
Official Airline Partner: Qatar Airways
Official Transport Partner: Volkswagen and Audi
About The World Federation of Exchanges
The World Federation of Exchanges is the trade association for the operators of regulated financial exchanges. With 64 members from around the globe, the WFE develops and promotes standards in markets, supporting reform in the regulation of OTC derivatives markets, international cooperation and coordination among regulators. WFE exchanges are home to nearly 45,000 listed companies. WFE statistics database covers more than 350 indicators and 70 years of data from exchanges worldwide.
About The Qatar Stock Exchange
Established in 1995, the Doha Securities Market (DSM) officially started operations in 1997. Since then the exchange has grown to become one of the leading stock markets in the GCC region.
In June 2009, Qatar Holding, the strategic and direct investment arm of Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), and NYSE Euronext, the world's leading exchange group, signed an agreement to form a major strategic partnership to establish the Exchange as a world-class market. The DSM was renamed the Qatar Stock Exchange on the conclusion of the deal.
The primary aim of the Qatar Stock Exchange is to support Qatar's economy by providing a venue for capital raising for Qatari companies as part of their corporate strategy and giving investors a platform through which they can trade a variety of products in a transparent and efficient manner. The Qatar Stock Exchange also provides the public with access to market information and ensures correct disclosure of information.
For any inquiries please contact Colin Hart – [email protected] +1 917 837 2211
SOURCE The Qatar Stock Exchange