Within Kuwait Financial Centre “Markaz” Gold sponsorship to New Kuwait Summit 2019, held on 10-11 December at Sheikh Jaber Al- Ahmad Al Sabah Cultural Centre, Mr. Manaf A. Alhajeri, Markaz CEO, said that the landscape is changing rapidly, regionally and internationally, urging for broadening the financial markets to achieve Social & National inclusiveness. He stated, “There are a lot of improvements seen in global competitiveness rankings especially in terms of ease of doing business. Capital market reforms have led to index inclusion and portfolio flows and now four out of six GCC markets are in the MSCI EM index. However, the social inclusiveness cannot be achieved without financial and economic inclusion. Alternative options need to be provided to support the financial sector in all GCC countries.”
Alhajeri’s statement was during his participation in “New Kuwait Summit 2019”, day 1, session 2, titled “Attracting finance to Kuwait, what are the opportunities and how easy is it to do business?” The panel discussion included elite leaders from the public and private sectors who discussed a number of key topics such as Diversification of the economy, Natural resources and oil wealth to support industry growth in other areas, What are the new industries and potential?, Public private partnerships and Knowledge economy.
During the panel discussion, Alhajeri added, “Fiscal Policy is broader than our current definition of financial sector. It is more than relying on the banking system, opening up markets for foreigners, implementing economic and stock market reforms and improving business environment. It necessitates empowering Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs), advocating national investment policy, promoting mutual funds, introducing and promote REITs, developing debt and capital markets (Bonds & Sukuk), focusing on SMEs, advocating other forms of financing, launching derivatives instruments, enhancing PPP projects, organizing roadshows and highlighting investment opportunities in global forums.”
Alhajeri said, “Saudi Aramco IPO is a game changer that demonstrated the power of local investors in what is the largest IPO in the world. The risk-reward ratio is extremely favourable for global investors, especially in the sovereign debt market. Diversification, innovation and knowledge economy are high on agenda for all GCC countries including Kuwait as a means to solve job problem. Global mega trends will infuse change and provide with new opportunities.”