ALTHOUGH the government’s self-imposed end-of-year deadline for opening a stock exchange is now just over two months away, Minister of Finance Keat Chhon said Tuesday there is still no specific launch date.
Speaking after a training workshop on securities regulators held in Phnom Penh, Keat Chhon said that progress had been made by Securities and Exchange Commission of Cambodia (SECC) officials and the private sector.
“We are not delayed; we are doing it, but there is no specific schedule for when [the exchange] will launch,” he said, adding it was simple to sign agreements on the bourse, but more difficult to fulfil requirements in practice.
“Only when corporate governance is good will the [securities] market open. Now we are getting stuck with many issues,” he said.
The ministry recently rejected architectural designs for the stock exchange building, forcing designers World City Co Ltd of South Korea to rework the plans ahead of a projected groundbreaking next month. According to this schedule, the structure would not be ready for use until about this time next year, World City Vice President Duk-kon Kim said previously.
Chan Narith, director of the SECC’s Department of Securities Market Supervision, said that six sectors would be prioritised for initial public offerings on the exchange – agriculture; physical infrastructure, including transportation and telecoms; utilities; human resource development; the export industry; and tourism.
“Because the securities sector is new for Cambodia, so public awareness, investor education and strong communication … are still limited,” he said.