Economy, Business And Markets

Int’l Confab on Islamic Capital Markets in Tehran

Int’l Confab on Islamic Capital Markets in TehranInt’l Confab on Islamic Capital Markets in Tehran

T he seventh International Conference on Islamic Capital Markets was held in Tehran on May 4-5. Jointly organized by the Securities and Exchange Organization (SEO), the Islamic Development Bank and Islamic Research and Training Institute, the conference aims at facilitating exchange of views and deliberation on the ways and means to develop Islamic capital markets.

Scholars from participating countries, include the editor in chief of Global Islamic Finance Magazine, Farhad Reyazat, and Oxford University lecturer, Mohammad Javad Gohari. Representatives from 12 countries, namely Germany, Indonesia, Turkey, Oman, Pakistan, India, Syria, Azerbaijan, Sudan, Tajikistan, Uganda, and Bangladesh also attending.

Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, head of the SEO Mohammad Fetanat pointed out that the conference comes as the Iranian government is pursuing to resolve misunderstandings with the P5+1 (the five permanent members of UN Security Council plus German), saying: “Iran is one of the fastest emerging markets and hence many foreign investors are laying the groundwork to enter the market as soon as the sanctions against Iran [imposed by the West over the country’s nuclear energy program] are lifted.”

He recalled that in 2005, Goldman Sachs investment bank had included Iran in the list of eleven countries (known as the Next-11 or N-11) that would experience the fastest economic growth by 2020, along with the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).

Fetanat said the three core objectives of the conference are facilitation of exchange of ideas and experiences among participants on Islamic financing and transition from traditional to modern avenues of Islamic investment, to familiarize investors and industry experts from non-Islamic countries with Islamic financial instruments, and diversify traditional Islamic financing by introducing modern instruments.

 Bearish Equity Market

The SEO head was asked on the sidelines of the conference to comment on the ongoing bearish trend at the equity market. He explained that the recent fluctuations and underperformance by listed companies at Tehran Stock Exchange (TSE) is directly linked to the overall economic atmosphere. “Any change is subject to reform in economic policies,” he said.

He denied allegations about leaks of some listed companies’ information, adding that as of May 22, all listed companies will be mandated to directly file their information via the CODAL system (comprehensive database of all listed companies) without involvement of any intermediary agent.

 German Co. in Iran’s Equity Market

Aspian Invest is the first German company to directly invest in Iran’s equity market, said CEO Stefan R. Kille in an interview with the Financial Tribune, adding: “Managing our own assets and providing investment advisory services to foreign investors is among the core policies of our company.”

Pointing that his company recently shared a booth with Tehran Stock Exchange and Iran Mercantile Exchange (IME) at Invest 2015 exhibition in Germany – the leading trade fair and congress for finance and investment – Kille added: “Potential investors lined up during the show to explore Iran’s equity market potential.”

“Iran’s economy is very promising and provides ample opportunities for foreign investors following the lifting of western sanctions. The educated and young Iranian population adds to the country’s advantages as a frontier market,” said Kille.

“The TSE has suitable rules and regulations as well as a convenient online trading platform,” he added, noting that: “The only major difference between TSE and Europe’s equity markets is in the limit up/limit down system.”