KUALA LUMPUR: The International Organisation of Securities Commissions (IOSCO), the world’s leading body of capital market regulators that oversees markets worth over US$140tril, launched its first-ever Asia-Pacific hub in Malaysia.
Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) chairman Tan Sri Ranjit Ajit Singh said the IOSCO Asia Pacific hub, the first outside its Madrid headquarters in Spain, will be fully operational by the middle of this year. Ranjit is IOSCO board vice-chairman.
“It is significant recognition for us. It will play a major role in developing capital markets, on a collaborative basis, which will help the Malaysian capital makret grow even further,” noted Ranjit.
The hub is also expected to strengthen regulatory capabilities in the region. Ranjit said its location in Malaysia reinforces the recognition that the country has been strengthening its capital markets over the years.
“Malaysia has one of the biggest capital markets in the region. It has the third largest Asia Pacific bond market.
Aside from providing more connectivity and opportunities, Ranjit noted that its location in Asia-Pacific will help to create a resilient and stronger regional marketplace.
“Among other roles, the hub will run capacity building programmes, carry out specific regulatory focused initiatives for Asia-Pacific and definite regulatory-themed workshops, among other roles,” he said.
The hub was launched at the Global Emerging Markets Regulatory Conference 2017 by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
Meanwhile, IOSCO board chairman and Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission chief executive officer Ashley Alder said Malaysia was chosen because its capital markets are highly-developed and the SC is a committed regulator with an international view.
“Malaysia is well-positioned for people to come over and work on capacity building across Asia.
“Over the longer term, this could result in greater harmonised rules that can allocate vast Asian savings for infrastructure development or to be used effectively to invest in assets in the west,” Alder noted.
He said that capital markets operating in countries with an infrastructure gap aren’t technically advanced enough to enable overseas institutional investors to commit for the long-term.
“As such, the hub will (enable) Asian savings to be deployed more productively,” he said. IOSCO is looking at developing more hubs in other nations in the near future.
Therefore, Malaysia, being the first, will set the tone for others, he pointed out.
The IOSCO is the world’s most important international cooperative forum for securities regulatory agencies. Its members regulate more than 90% of the world’s securities markets.
It sets international standards for securities regulation, identify issues affecting global markets, and make recommendations in meeting those challenges.