Kudzanai Gerede Business Correspondent
THE Zimbabwe Stock Exchange will in the short term establish a listing platform for Small and Medium companies with growth potential as a way of increasing indigenous participation in capital markets.
The bourse will require a minimum share capital of US$250 000 for listed companies and will operate as a separate board of the ZSE, using the same ZSE infrastructure and personnel and a dedicated section in the ZSE Listings Requirements.
“The ZSE seeks to launch Zimbabwe Emerging Enterprise Market (ZEEM) as a listing and trading platform for small and medium companies with a minimum share capital of USD$250 000,” said ZSE in a statement availed to the Press at the launch of the capital market investor education campaign held in Harare last week.
The country’s Small and Medium Enterprises sector has risen over the years, with the country’s inaugural Central Business Register (CBR) Inquiry Report 2015 suggesting over 60 percent of registered operating companies falls within the small and medium business establishments category.
ZSE is on an outreach drive to boost traders on the country’s stock markets with the campaign aimed at simplifying the sophisticated processes while instilling confidence in the local bourse.
Securities and Exchange Commission of Zimbabwe (SECZ) chief executive, Mr Tafadzwa Chinhamo, highlighted the importance of having Alternative Trading Platforms (ATPs) as a catalyst to financial inclusion on capital markets for ordinary economic players across the country.
“We have done a great disservice to the economy by not opening capital markets to ordinary citizens and we have to start by emphasising that the fundamentals of the share market are strong enough.
“We have the Investor Protection Fund to compensate our investors in case of any eventuality by the stock brokers to swindle funds,” he said.
ZEEM comes at a time ZSE is promoting the establishment of ATPs starting with the Financial Securities (FINSEC) Alternative Trading Platform which started trading stocks last year and simplifying capital markets through integrating basic payment platforms used by public such as SMS and mobile money platforms when investing in market places.
“We recognise that developing our capital markets is not only about bringing new products, but it is also about widening the investor catch load,” said FINSEC executive director, Mr Collen Tapfumanei.
Currently there are just above 7 000 traders on the country’s capital markets, compared to a peak of over 22 000 trading stocks on the ZSE in the 1990s.