BEIRUT: Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh said Wednesday that activating Lebanon’s capital market wound help create jobs as well as reducing private sector indebtedness by issuing shares.
“Activating the capital markets in Lebanon is in the interest of the private sector. It will create more jobs directly or indirectly. It will help reduce private sector indebtedness by issuing shares. It will also help to better distribute its debt by issuing bonds that lead to better scheduling of benefits,” the governor told participants in Arab Stock Exchanges Conference which was held at Four Seasons Hotel in Beirut.
He added that the electronic platform could be run from Beirut Stock Exchange if the government decided to privatize the bourse.
“The Capital Markets Authority supervises this sector, as well as its mission to provide an environment conducive to the financial markets in Lebanon. We are looking to create opportunities for funds and companies to put their shares in these markets if they so wish,” he said.
He stressed that capital markets in Lebanon are promising because of available liquidity and free transfer of funds, although the financial authorities do not allow financing of more than 50 percent of the value of the stock. “One of the most important elements of success is the human element and we have issued circulars to train and qualify these staff through exams,” Salameh said.
He added that Lebanon also cooperates with Insider Trading, locally, regionally and internationally, through its financial institutions.
“We also conduct courses to encourage the governance and transparency of data, particularly those companies whose shares will be listed on the Lebanese Organization’s markets,’ Salameh said.
“Since its establishment, the Capital Markets Authority has signed several memorandums of understanding and agreements of cooperation and coordination with a number of financial institutions in the countries of the world. In addition, the Lebanese Capital Market Authority joined the International Organization of Capital Market Authorities (ICFC) as a member in 2016,” the governor said.