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SAUDI ARABIA’S STOCK MARKET TO BE INCLUDED IN IFC’S GLOBAL INDEX


L. Joseph
Phone: (202) 473-7700
Fax: (202) 974-4384
E-mail: ljoseph@ifc.org


WASHINGTON, D.C., April 20—The International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group, is working jointly with the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) to develop a stock market index that will incorporate the Saudi stock exchange as part of IFC’s Global Composite Index, which currently covers 32 countries.

The IFC Global Saudi Index will be constructed along the lines of all IFC Global Indexes -- eventually capturing 65-75% of the total market valuation of the Saudi market, selecting the most actively traded stocks first until the target coverage is achieved.  Launch of the index is expected next month.


At a recent meeting in Washington, D.C. with Their Excellencies Mr. Ibrahim Al-Assaf, Minister of Finance and National Economy of Saudi Arabia, and Sheikh Hamad Al-Sayari, Governor of the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency, Mr. Jannik Lindbaek, IFC’s Executive Vice President emphasized the advantages to the country’s economy through increased foreign investment flows, which generally follow inclusion of a country’s stock market in the Index.  The inclusion would also help raise Saudi Arabia’s profile among world stock markets.


The Saudi stock market is one of the leading stock exchanges by value among emerging markets, with a market capitalization of about US$50-60 billion.