Saudi Leadership Delighted at FTSE Inclusion for Tadawul; Billions Expected in Fresh Inflows

The Saudi Arabian stock market will join FTSE Russell’s emerging market index starting in March next year in a move that will likely bring billions of dollars of fresh investment into the Kingdom, Reuters reports.

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Finance Minister Mohammed Al-Jadaan met with the Mark Makepeace, chief executive of FTSE Russell, in New York this week. The decision is a boost to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s reforms in Saudi Arabia, and financial news outlets noted the move might pave the way for Saudi Aramco’s IPO to be listed domestically in the Kingdom.

“The feedback we have heard from investors is positive,” Sarah Al-Suhaimi, who is chairwoman of the Tadawul, said in an interview in Bloomberg on Tuesday. “They had certain concerns and we have addressed most of them, so generally we’re optimistic.”

According to Forbes, Mohammed El-Kuwaiz, chairman of the Capital Markets Authority (CMA), professed himself to be “delighted”, while Khalid Al Hussan, chief executive of the Tadawul, said it “marks a significant moment in the development of our capital markets.”

Mr. Makepeace told a press conference in New York that “Saudi Arabia’s inclusion in the FTSE benchmark is the largest event in the emerging markets since 2001, and an important development for global investors,” Reuters notes.