February 24, 2012
THE Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), yesterday, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Capital Market Authority of Kenya, under an agenda scripted by the Federal Government to tackle financial crimes.
The MOU, which was signed during the ongoing 28th edition of the International Organisation of Securities Commission- Africa and Middle East Regional Committee (IOSCO-AMERC), is also expected to boost relationship between both countries, especially in the area of information sharing and capacity building.
Director-General of SEC, Arunma Oteh, who signed on behalf of Nigeria, said the partnership would pave way for Nigeria to benefit from the market integration in East Africa.
Already, Oteh said that Nigeria has signed similar MOUs with eight countries, including China, Malaysia, South Africa, Ghana and Uganda.
She explained that Nigeria’s business interest was growing in Kenya in particular, and East Africa in general, adding that the MOU is capable of protecting the integrity of both countries.
“This is a great opportunity for both countries to solidify relationships. It is an opportunity to lean from each other. It is an opportunity to protect our integrity”, said Oteh.
She described capital market as a veritable opportunity to transform economies and societies in general.
Chief Executive Officer, Capital Market Authority of Kenya, Mrs Stella Kilonzo, who signed on behalf of her country, said the partnership is capable facilitating mutual assistance between both countries.
Earlier, while welcoming delegates to the 28th AMERC meeting, Kilonzo said the forum would address cross-cutting issues among capital markets and financial sector regulators on regulation, market development and more importantly cooperation in promoting financial stability in the region.
She added: “The capital markets remain a critical component of Kenya’s Vision 2030 as we aspire to be a middle-income country in the next 18 years and an international financial centre.
“In this part of Kenya (coastal region), there is a number of huge infrastructure projects that have been initiated such as the Lamu-Southern Sudan - Ethiopia Transport (LAPSSET) Corridor, the Lamu Port, where His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Kenya, will be laying the foundation the coming two weeks.
“Others are the Special Economic Zone (SEZ), the Kenya Ports Authority, and Export Processing Zone Authority (EPZA) projects, that will seek funding through the bonds, rights issues, Asset Backed Securities (ABS) and other capital market instruments.
“We believe that a well functioning capital market will accelerate the development of the Kenyan authority and that a robust harmonised regulatory and policy framework through cooperation amongst AMERC members will attract both issuers and investors beyond our respective geographical borders”.