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w w w . s a u d i g a z e t t e . c o m . s a

EDITION

WEEKEND

VOL: 470 — ISSUE NO: 14852 — FRIDAY 22 JUNE 2018, 8 SHAWWAL — 1439

International

Day of Yoga

celebrated

in Riyadh

with verve

and fervor

P2

Turning

technology

into a

cybercrime

P20

New clashes

threaten

political push

in Libya

P4

www.saudigazette.com.sa

IN

SIDE

The Sheikh’s house in the cradle of his call

P3

Budget flights do not mean lower standards of service

P8

New research: Better cities, better climate – better returns on investment?

P9

s

s

s

Pressure

mounts on

Brazil

Sports P15

Yet another success, says Tadawul chief

T

HE decision to upgrade Saudi

Arabia’s Standalone Market

to an Emerging Market status

is evidence of the success of

development efforts in that regard,

chairwoman of Saudi Arabia’s stock

exchange Tadawul, Sarah Al-Suhaimi,

said in a press statement on Thursday.

The status upgrade will greatly

facilitate foreigner investments, she

added.

Suhaimi also said the time period

that the Saudi stock market was super-

vised by the MSCI Index is the shortest

in comparison to other markets.

In a statement, Suhaimi congratu-

lated the Saudi exchange on joining

the MSCI index, which is “the most

prominent international indices, which

directly follows our success in joining

FTSE Resal Emerging Markets Index,

which reflects the competitiveness of

the Saudi stock market among global

financial markets.”

Suhaimi added that this is an impor-

tant achievement that was reached due

to the cooperation between Tadawul and

other relevant authorities who worked

together to enhance the efficiency of the

financial market and build an environ-

ment that will attract both foreign and

local investors.

Featuring 32 stocks and with a

weighing of 2.6%, Saudi Arabia’s

Tadawul index is the Middle East’s larg-

est stock exchange with a market capi-

talization of about $500 billion.

— Al

Arabiya English

BOURSE GETS BUOYANT

Saudi Gazette report

T

HE Saudi stock ex-

change, Tadawul, has

been upgraded to the

status of an emerg-

ing market by global

index provider MSCI, a step ex-

pected to lure billions of dollars

in foreign investments.

The decision, announced late

Wednesday, is the second key

development for Tadawul, the

largest Arab stock market with

capitalization of over $525 bil-

lion, after the global FTSE Rus-

sell index granted it secondary

emerging market status in March.

MSCI, in which the UAE and

Qatari bourses are already in-

cluded, will also cover Tadawul

in two phases starting from June

2019, it said in a statement.

Minister of Finance Moham-

med Bin Abdullah Al-Jadaan

said: “These reforms in the Saudi

financial market are in line with

the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 and

the government’s strong commit-

ment to modernizing the Saudi

economy through comprehensive

reforms that have contributed

to providing the market with

the best international standards,

making it more attractive to both

domestic and foreign investors”.

Minister Al-Jadaan added,

“We will continue to build a fi-

nancial market in which the sys-

tem will be strengthened, inves-

tor confidence will increase and

market functions will steadily

evolve to serve the Saudi econ-

omy while stimulating savings,

finance and investments”.

The minister explained that

this listing confirms confidence

in stable and promising expecta-

tions of the Saudi economy, the

strength of its financial markets,

the expected participation of a

larger number of international

investors will contribute signifi-

cantly to the growth, develop-

ment and maturity of the market

and the Government of Custodi-

an of the Two Holy Mosques will

continue to work with all rel-

evant parties to further improve

regulations in place to facilitate

foreign investments following

A screen gives the latest share prices on the Saudi Arabia stock exchange, also known as the Tadawul All Share Index in Riyadh. “The inclusion of Saudi stocks in the MSCI Emerging

Markets Index will facilitate investors’ accessibility to the local stock market and will attract foreign investments into the Kingdom. — Courtesy photo

Saudi stock exchange joins MSCI emerging market index

MSCI and other indicators.

Dr. Majed Bin Abdullah Al-

Qasabi, minister of Trade and

Investment, affirmed that the

inclusion by the MSCI index of

the Saudi market index in the

emerging markets is a reflection

of the Saudi market’s efficiency

in reaching global markets’

levels.

The minister highlighted ad-

vantages of this move including

enhancement of the liquidity in

the Saudi financial market by in-

creasing investments and diver-

sifying investment opportunities

for exporters and investors.

Vanessa Robert, a vice presi-

dent and senior credit officer at

Moody’s Investors Service, said:

“The inclusion of Saudi stocks

in the MSCI Emerging Markets

Index will facilitate investors’

accessibility to the local stock

market and will attract foreign

investments into Saudi Ara-

bia. International asset owners

managing passive investment

strategies in the emerging market

space will see their investment

universe broadened. $1.9 trillion

in assets are currently bench-

marked to the MSCI Emerging

Markets Index suite”.

Mohammed El-Kuwaiz,

chairman of the Capital Market

Authority (CMA), the govern-

ment’s regulatory body for the

sector, said the decision will ex-

pand liquidity base in the saudi

bourse.

“The inclusion decision shall

enhance the diversity of the

investors’ base as well as the li-

quidity of the saudi Capital Mar-

ket,” Kuwaiz said in a statement

posted on Tadawul’s website.

“Inclusion in the MSCI

Emerging Market Index is an

important milestone and further

affirmation of the tremendous

progress Tadawul has made in

the past year,” said its CEO,

Khalid Al-Hussan.

The move follows a series of

stock market reforms by Tadawul

and its regulator, the Saudi Capi-

tal Market Authority, to make it

easier for foreigners to invest.

In 2015, Tadawul introduced

a program allowing large inter-

national institutions to invest on

the market.

Since then, 120 international

financial institutions have joined

Tadawul and 180 others are in

the process of joining, Tadawul

said in March.

Saudi authorities say they

plan to sell up to five percent of

oil giant Aramco within the next

12 months.

A portion of those shares will

be listed domestically. Allow-

ing foreign funds into the Saudi

stock market will facilitate the

sale of the planned IPO.

Salah Shamma, head of in-

vestment, MENA, Franklin Tem-

pleton Emerging Markets Equity,

said: “Saudi Arabia’s inclusion in

MSCI’s EM Index is a milestone

achievement and will likely

bring with it significant levels

of foreign investment. It is a

recognition of the progress Saudi

Arabia has made in implement-

ing its ambitious capital markets

transformation agenda. The halo

effect of such a move will be felt

across the stock exchanges of the

entire Gulf Cooperation Council

(GCC). The region now becomes

one that is hard for global inves-

tors to ignore. In our view, the

GCC remains on a very positive

trajectory; improving economic

fundamentals, coupled with

ongoing fiscal reform agendas

make a compelling investment

case.”

—With input from

Agencies