Listing of state-owned firms will improve efficiency, says CMA chief

Muscat - 

If Oman's state-owned companies choose to be listed on the Muscat Securities Market (MSM), it will help them to improve efficiency and profitability apart from benefitting ordinary investors in the capital market, according to the executive president of the Capital Market Authority (CMA). 

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a workshop on 'Importance of Disclosure in Securities Market' on Wednesday, H E Abdullah al Salmi said, “Listing of state-owned companies is very important for the market. State-owned companies are closed companies related to the government. So what happens in these companies is known only to the government. Bringing them to the market would definitely enhance their efficiency and will also bring transparency in the way they do their business.”

He said the listing of state-owned firms will require them to disclose information. “So this will not only enhance their efficiency but profitability as well. It will also ensure sustainability of these companies in the long-term.”

Over 150 delegates from different organisations including the MSM and various public and private sectors companies participated in the CMA's workshop which was organised at Sheraton Oman Hotel.

In the sultanate's 2018 budget, the government has emphasised on promoting efficiency of state-owned firms in order to enhance their contribution to the economy and also stressed on the importance of good corporate governance. The government also launched a privatisation scheme, under which six state-owned enterprises are planned for privatisation this year, the budget document revealed.

On the level of compliance by listed companies regarding their disclosures, H E Salmi said, “In terms of periodical disclosures, all the companies are fully complying with disclosure rules. But it is the instant disclosures that we are concerned about. If anything happens in a listed company any time, then it needs to be disclosed to the market.”

Speaking about the CMA's workshop on disclosures, he said the workshop is organised to raise awareness about the importance of disclosure by listed companies. “Disclosures by the listed companies are a major element to enhance trading. Whatever happens in the publicly-listed companies should be disclosed to the public. This information enables people to make their decisions whether to buy, sell or hold shares of a particular company.”

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