Financial Technologies (India) Ltd. yesterday announced the launch of the Bahrain Financial Exchange (BFX).
The BFX regulated by the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) and has been given approval to list cash and derivatives instruments on multiple asset classes such as currencies, commodities, equity and debt related products for trading and clearing by its brokers. The Exchange will also list and trade Islamic finance instruments or Sharia compliant products.
The BFX will be an international financial exchange providing the widest possible access to its brokers from any part of the world to trade in multi asset products through a single venue. It also aims to be a leading market place for regional and international businesses to raise capital by issuing and listing various types of financial instruments on its markets. The Exchange will offer full end-to end automated trading, with clearing and depository settlement services, providing low latency and low transaction costs.
The Exchange which is already registered with the Ministry of Industry and Commerce will begin trading in the first quarter 2010 and will serve financial market participants, investors and issuers, to provide services for hedging, arbitrage, investment and fund raising. The Exchange will catalyze performance in the Middle East financial markets through enhancing price discovery, market transparency, risk management, cross-border economic integration, finance and investment in the Arab world.
Bahrain has the oldest and most established financial sector in the region. The country is ranked 16th freest economy in the world, and the freest in the GCC, according to the latest Index of Economic Freedom, published by the Heritage Foundation and the Wall Street Journal.
A.Rahman Al-Baker, Executive Director, Central Bank of Bahrain, said, "BFX is part of the broadening of the capital market services within the economy of the Kingdom of Bahrain. BFX will in addition to the current services offered by the Bahrain Stock Exchange as the market for the listing of equity and debt securities, provide additional investment opportunities to global, regional and local investors. Bahrain is home to over 400 financial institutions and with the establishment of BFX, an international multi asset financial exchange in Bahrain, will strengthen its position as the leading financial hub of the region.
H.E. Mohammed Bin Essa Al-Khalifa, CEO, Bahrain Economic Development Board, said: "The Bahrain Economic Development Board is delighted to welcome Financial Technologies which has great experience in setting up financial exchanges in various other countries. Bahrain offers international companies a location which combines the lowest cost of doing business in the Middle East with strong and highly regarded regulation and excellent access to other gulf markets. We are very pleased that Financial Technologies has chosen Bahrain as a base and look forward to a successful relationship with the company as it develops BFX into a world class exchange."
Arshad Khan, Director BFX, said, "Bahrain is widely regarded as the best-regulated financial centre in the Middle East. Important developments are taking place in the country to widen the scope of the financial services. Through the BFX, Financial Technologies will endeavour to participate in these developments and significantly contribute to the emerging globalised economy of Bahrain. The multi asset profile of BFX will give it a unique standing to become a leading market place in the region."
Throughout 2009 the BFX will leverage upon the skills of its globally experienced management team to establish the Exchange's infrastructure, work with market participants to develop products and services to meet market requirements. Training and education will also be a central activity that the BFX will focus on in 2009.
Financial Technologies' track record in building world class exchange environments will leverage its high level of transparency and expertise in financial markets to ensure that BFX is the centre for multi asset trading in the Middle East.