Oman’s stock market, the Muscat Securities Market (MSM), will now be known as the Muscat Stock Exchange (MSX) as the Omani bourse has completed its transformation and converted into a closed joint stock company under the umbrella of the Oman Investment Authority (OIA).
In accordance with the Royal Decree No 5/2021 issued by His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik on January 5, 2021, an Omani closed joint stock company has been established under the name of Muscat Stock Exchange SAOC, to takeover and undertake all activities and functions of the Muscat Securities Market.
From April 10 (Saturday), all assets, liabilities, activities, rights and functions of the MSM stand transferred and assigned to the MSX, according to a press statement issued by the Muscat Stock Exchange.
The transformation of Oman’s stock market into a closed joint stock company will enhance the investment development process, both by providing an effective platform full of opportunities for listing and trading securities, as well as supporting diversity in economic development plans and ensuring the sustainability of financial instruments.
With this transformation, the MSX aspires to take a leading role in the regional and international securities arena through various innovative initiatives aimed at developing the stock exchange with transparency, governance, improved companies performance, increased operational effectiveness and the issuance of new investment opportunities and instruments.
In his statement, H E Sheikh Abdullah bin Salem al Salmi, executive president of the Capital Market Authority (CMA), said, “Today’s date will be recorded in the history as an important milestone in Oman’s capital market journey. We are certain that this step will help improve the market further and provide a platform for market forces to flourish in order to derive desired results necessary for the development of the investment climate and provide us with a more diversified market.”
H E Salmi said that the transformation of Oman’s stock exchange into a joint stock company is the first step towards the transition of the MSX into becoming a publicly listed company on our securities platform, in future, keeping in line with the global best practices.
New board of directors
The Oman Investment Authority on Thursday announced the formation of a new board of directors for the Muscat Stock Exchange.
Mohammed bin Mahfoodh al Ardhi has been appointed as the chairman of the newly-formed board of directors of the MSX. Ardhi is the executive chairman of Investcorp, a global financial institution specialising in alternative investments.
He has been leading the firm’s assets since 2015 and has been a director on Investcorp’s board since 2008.
Prior to Investcorp, Ardhi’s positions included Commander of the Royal Oman Air Force at the rank of Major General, chairman of Sohar International Bank and chairman of National Bank of Oman.
Abdullah Saleh al Suweilmy, former CEO of the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul), and Roland Schwinn, managing director and shareholder at Sygnum Bank (Singapore and Switzerland), have been named as the two international board members at the MSX board.
OIA has also appointed ImadKamal Sultan and Dr HatimBakhit al Shanfari as the board members of MSX.
Sultan has held various positions within the WJ Towell Group and its subsidiaries and is currently the group’s vice-chairman, managing director and chairman of the executive committee.
Dr Shanfari has diverse experience that spans academia, business and civil society in Oman. He is currently a faculty member in the department of economics and finance at Sultan Qaboos University.
Additionally, the Oman Investment Authority will be represented at MSX’s board of directors by SamraSulaiman al Harthy, director of investment and economic research at OIA, and MathlaSaleh al Shaqsi, a senior associate of investments at OIA.
Ardhi stated that this is a historic milestone in the march of the securities sector in Oman, a new start for the sultanate’s financial market and a next stage of growth and development.
The chairman of the MSX board affirmed that the Muscat Stock Exchange has sufficient resources that it will work on to develop the stock market sector by offering and presenting new investment products and services that meet the aspirations of investors.
“We expect that this step of transformation will be followed by another step, which is the transformation of the stock exchange into a public joint stock company listed on the stock exchange itself,” Ardhi said.
He indicated that the new entity will work under the umbrella of the OIA as one of its companies, and this in turn will push the work process according to a commercial method aimed at raising the efficiency of operations in the stock exchange and applying the principles of governance.