Dubai – “ASWAQ”
GCC countries are urged to harmonize rules and regulations as the vast majority of institutions operate globally, and have to comply with multiple laws and codes of practice at the same time. Lack of harmonization continues to be a major cause for concern among market participants.
Economic experts, at the 2nd ‘GCC Financial Markets & Treasury Conference’ in Dubai, discussed the direct impact of the ‘new oil order’ on GCC countries and the anticipated economic implications of the rise of fiscal deficits in the region.
During a panel discussion, one of the high profile speakers at the event, Marshall Bailey, President of ACI International, analysed the progress that has been made thus far in developing and enforcing codes of conduct and risk management in the GCC.
Bailey said, “The vast majority of institutions operate globally, and therefore, have to comply with multiple laws and codes of practice at the same time. When these rules diverge, contradict or are unclear, compliance becomes confusing, resource-heavy and requires additional personnel, time and money.”
Bailey called for the GCC regulators to create laws which are as globally harmonised as possible, although he acknowledges there are further implications in relation to codes of conduct, and to invest time and money into educating the traders on awareness of the rules and acceptable behaviour.
Trader education, not regulation, is the key to solving the current market issues, and once individuals are made aware, their managers and compliance departments need to make sure it is enforced appropriately,”said Bailey.
Bailey advises that in order to create clarity in the market, national regulators should adopt the clearly defined codes and if necessary, to back up with laws to be incorporated in the national financial regulations and guarantee strong enforcement.
This harmonization is also beneficial for regulators, as they can measure the behaviour, ethics and conduct of all participants by the same criteria, regardless of their location, and any misdemeanours can be immediately addressed.
Bailey highlighted at the conference that the ACI Model Code is widely accepted as the most complete of codes and provides a comprehensive moral compass to which professionals can adhere globally.
The ‘GCC Financial Markets & Treasury Conference’ is organised by the UAE Financial Markets Association, in association with strategic partner Dubai International Financial Centre, which has been instrumental in connecting financial institutes together.
Other speakers at the event include Thunayan Al Ghanim, Honorary President, ICA and KFMA Kuwait; Professor Tom James, Co-Founder and Managing Director, Novita’s Resources; Fahad Al Turkic, Chief Economist and Head of Research, Jada Investment; and Mohammed Alsahlawi, Professor of Economics, King Fahad University of Petroleum.