By Chinwendu Obienyi
In a bid to enhance financial inclusion for the benefit of Africa’s economic development, the African Exchanges Linkage Project, at the weekend, went live on integrating the African capital markets by facilitating cross-border trading and free movement of investments in the continent through the AELP Link platform.
The go-live happened when the platform was officially switched on at 0000 UTC and the interconnectivity platform enables the trading of exchange-listed securities across 7 participating securities exchanges.
The AELP is a flagship project of the African Securities Exchanges Association (ASEA) and the African Development Bank (AfDB).
The 7 exchanges participating in Phase 1 of the AELP include; Bourse Regionale des Valeurs Mobilieres (BRVM), Bourse de Casablanca, The Egyptian Exchange (EGX), Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE), Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX), and Stock Exchange of Mauritius (SEM).
Commenting on the go-live, the ASEA President Dr. Edoh Kossi Amenounve, described the development as a great milestone set towards achieving ASEA’s mission to engage African capital market ecosystems in order to foster capital mobilisation, promote sustainability, and enhance financial inclusion for the benefit of Africa’s economic development.
He said, “Trading infrastructure harmonisation through the Link is expected to ease existing trading processes and potentially reduce the cost of trading across African capital markets. I therefore congratulate all the participating exchanges and the respective brokers for being front-runners in this great pan-African integration initiative”.
Also speaking on the successful live integration of the AELP, the Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX), Temi Popoola, lauded the efforts of stakeholders in the actualisation of the project, adding that the AELP Link is a testament to the will of African capital market participants, particularly exchanges to effectively collaborate and drive cross-border trading and capital formation.
Popoola further said this will significantly facilitate capital flows between African countries and further move us closer to the accomplishment of the goals of the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement via the fusion of our respective financial markets.