STOCK exchange chiefs from the Southern Africa Development Community (Sadc) have resolved to work together to attract foreign investment to regional bourses.
Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) chief executive officer Emmanuel Munyukwi said this mission was arrived at, at the first quarterly meeting of the Committee on Sadc Stock Exchanges (Cosse) in Livingstone, Zambia last week.
Said Munyukwi of the Livingstone meeting: “We are always comparing what is happening from regional bourses.”
He said developed countries lacked information about the market and such meetings gave networking opportunities among world players.
“Some fund managers who were investing in Africa got average returns of 16% while in America the average return was 3%,” said Munyukwi.
He said the quarterly meetings were meant to harmonise listing requirements in the region.
“Ways and means on how we can increase capacity were discussed and notes on how to improve performance on the bourses were exchanged,” he said.
Munyukwi said the meeting also delved on exchange controls in the region that were an impediment on foreign investment.
“It was meant to get stock exchanges properly regulated in a way that attracts investment,” he said.
The Livingstone meeting tackled the training of personnel and how bourses can improve people’s participation on the stock market.
“It looked at training of industry personnel and how stock exchanges could increase their capacities,” Munyukwi said.
Among its participants were stock exchange chiefs from the Sadc region minus Angola, the DRC and Lesotho and the next quarterly meeting comes in Mauritius in September.
The Livingstone meeting comes hard on the heels of the New York meeting last month, which was coordinated by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in conjunction with Africa Stock Exchange Association and the New York Stock Exchange.
Munyukwi said investors have shown an interest in the ZSE, which has been performing well since 1999.
“There are some investors who had shown interest but they have not yet invested because of a number of reasons,” he said.
But he said those who had invested in the emerging market are still clinging on to their investments.
The ZSE chief said the bourse had applied to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development for a review of listing fees for companies that want to join the bourse.
He said the current fee of $1 million needed to be reviewed as the cost of providing consultancy services had gone up astronomically.
The ZSE has been on a bull run and has become a safe haven for investment in the volatile economic climate.
This year two companies joined the lucrative stock market.
Brick moulding firm Willdale joined the ZSE in February, while emerging telecommunication company Cellular Systems (Celsys) joined the bourse in April.
Fidelity Life Assurance whose, Initial Public Offer (IPO) opened on Tuesday this week lists on the bourse on June 23.