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Highlights of Chairman Al Ballaa’s speech during AFCM 2024

Highlights of Chairman Al Ballaa’s speech during AFCM 2024
Mohammed Al Ballaa, Chairman of Mubasher Financial Group

Mubasher: Chairman of Mubasher Financial Group, Mohammed Al Ballaa, stated that the emergence of the fintech industry helped with the success witnessed in stock exchanges and different sectors over the past years.

Al Ballaa noted, during the third edition of the Arab Federation of Capital Markets (AFCM) Annual Conference, that fintech is a general comprehensive term, but it is not limited to initiatives, platforms, or smart applications that serve certain segments.

He elaborated that it includes big achievements carried out by the Arab exchanges and capital markets, as well as capital market authorities, including the Egyptian Exchange’s (EGX) execution of the first step in digital transformation of stock markets in 2000 under the leadership of Sameh Eltorgoman. This was seen in publishing data and trading information.

Al Ballaa carried out by adding that the EGX’s move was followed by providing the first online trading services by the Saudi Exchange (Tadawul); a step that proved the success of shifting to the online method, as Tadawul used to register 2,000 daily transactions, but within two years from this transformation the number of daily transactions surged to more than 500,000 in Tadawul. Furthermore, the number of stock investors skyrocketed from 30,000 to 15 million.

As for fintech initiatives, the Chairman said Bahrain Bourse provided private companies with online trading services. This step enhances the integrity of the services, instead of only being offered to the listed companies. 

In addition, the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) launched Tabadul Hub in July 2022 as the first digital exchange centre in the region to connect stock markets.

The fintech also boosted online websites and applications with digital payments and wallets to serve all categories. Meanwhile, mobile phones shifted from their main function to become a point of sale (POS) available for everyone.

Al Ballaa indicated to microloans that are now available to small investors and borrowers, which endorsed activities in all communities and provided a source of income on a larger scale.

He added that in the past, capabilities were only limited to international companies, but they are currently available to all, however, innovation, adventure, and institutional support are main factors.

The Chairman concluded: “Who would expect that a Saudi company could open up to seven branches across the world and connect this number of stock markets and investment tools.”

Earlier in the two-day event, Al Ballaa referred to the group’s network that connects 91 markets from across the globe.

He also noted that his company hopes to increase the number of investors in the Arab stock markets.