AIX (Astana International Exchange) announces the launch of a number of innovative initiatives aimed at improving the overall efficiency of its market place while increasing international investors' level of confidence.
Four initiatives were rolled out simultaneously: Multi-Currency Settlement, Securities Lending & Borrowing, Covered Short-Selling and a new Custody Model. Multi-Custody Settlement allows investors to trade securities listed in Kazakh Tenge (KZT) and settle these trades in USD with the facility to add additional settlement currencies based on customer demand. The new service is made available to Trading Members using the FIX protocol and all the data needed to use the service is displayed on the Market Watch page of the AIX website.
Securities Lending and Borrowing is available to appointed Market Makers after being authorized by AIX Regulation & Compliance. Securities lending may also be used to prevent settlement failures. The Securities Lending and Borrowing program is governed by the industry-standard Global Market Securities Lending Agreement (GMSLA) or any other agreement acceptable to AIX. Market Makers entering into a valid GMSLA with an authorized lender will also be allowed to perform covered short-selling.
Finally, the introduction of a new custody model provides a major improvement for institutional investors whereby their assets, whether cash or securities, remain at all times under the safekeeping of a Custodian who is a Participant of the AIX CSD. Trading members will keep providing the trading service and will "giveup" the resulting trades to the Custodian who, upon confirmation from the customer, will "take-up" the trade and subsequent cash or securities settlement obligations. In the absence of a confirmation from the customer to its Custodian, the settlement obligation remains with the Trading Member.
Commenting on the introduction of the new features, Olivier Gueris, Chief Operating Officer of AIX, noted that "these go far beyond what is generally offered in frontier markets. The introduction of these initiatives will have a major positive impact on the liquidity of our market place while also helping to attract new institutional investors to AIX, based on their increased level of confidence that it is a safe and sound market through which to invest."
AIX CSD Rules changes to reflect these improvements were approved by the Astana Financial Services Authority and AIX CSD Procedures were updated accordingly.