Abu Dhabi launches second hi-tech stock market

Published November 16th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

The United Arab Emirates launched Wednesday, November 15, its second hi-tech financial market, the Abu Dhabi Securities Market (ADSM), officials said. 


The market, opened in the presence of senior Emirati officials by Sheikh Sultan al-Nahyan, chairman of Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce, saw only two small trades during its first session. 


The ADSM, which opened last week to allow companies to register ahead of the official start date, currently has eight licensed brokers and 13 listed companies, officials said. 


It will be linked electronically to the Dubai Financial Market (DFM), which was launched in March, and form a single market. Bourse officials gave no time frame for the link-up. 


President Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan al-Nahayan issued a decree in February establishing a stock exchange in the United Arab Emirates, the last of the oil-rich Gulf states to open a formal bourse. 


The UAE cabinet approved the establishment of the exchange in June 1999 in the wake of a scandal involving the current unofficial market, in which 37 authorized traders dealt by telephone in Emirati stocks currently valued at around $35 billion. 


The scandal, which involved dealing in unsecured bank loans taken out by a heavily indebted firm whose stock was traded on the market, led to a sharp fall on the market and prompted the central bank to call for a properly regulated exchange to end the "chaos" .— (AFP)  


© Agence France Presse 2000  

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