In a syndicated move to further develop the Nigerian capital markets and the economy as a whole, five exchanges listed under Nigeria’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Wednesday launched the Association of Securities Exchanges in Nigeria (ASEN).
The Association, established to accelerate the development of domestic securities exchanges and support the Nigerian capital market to achieve greater global competitiveness, comprises the AFEX Commodities Exchange (AFEX), FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange (FMDQ), NASD OTC Securities Exchange (NASD), Nigeria Commodity Exchange (NCX) and the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).
Explaining how the exchanges who despite their distinct visions and aspirations have decided to cooperate while still driving competition, Mary Uduk, SEC Ag director general who lauded the initiative, urged members to keep investment opportunities healthy for the development of the capital market.
Oscar Onyema CEO of NSE and chairman board of trustees ASEN further underscored the importance of the union, saying that “the establishment of an industry association that unites securities and commodities exchanges in Nigeria, could not be timelier as global exchanges are developing mechanisms for cooperation, collaboration and in some cases, consolidation, as a means to fulfill their socio-economic roles and growth aspirations.”
While giving the opening remarks at the epoch making event, Onyema explained that the association will serve as an information clearing house, “where value can be extracted from our platforms”. He explained that ASEN will be a go to place to drive capacity building, for consolidated information on Nigeria’s financial markets and a strengthened voice to further drive solutions to the needs of local and foreign investors.
Bola Ajomale, CEO of the NASD who spoke on behalf of the association noted that the union was necessary giving it’s representative role in depicting how the Nigerian financial market works.
“Investors don’t look at Nigeria in markets, but see it as a whole economy,” Ajomale said, adding that the union is necessary towards drivng more efficient and more attractive markets.
Speaking further, Ajomale noted that ASEN is not an exclusive association and it is open to other registered exchanges across the country, urging the likes of the Lagos Commodities Exchange (LCX) to hurry with getting registered via SEC and get more involved.
Advising ASEN on the need to use its unique position, clout and resources to strengthen the domestic leg of the market, Olutola Mobolurin chairman of NASD board of Directors and the current chairman of Capital Bancorp Limited described the launching on the association as a big milestone.
“I am happy that I am alive to see the day when the NSE will look at other exchanges and commit to work together to lift the economy, but we must together lift up this economy by promoting savings.”
He added that with savings, investment of a country will grow, “we can’t live with foreign savings we must build and strengthen the domestic leg of the market,” he urged.