KARACHI - Securities & Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) Chairman Zafar Hijazi has emphasized that stock exchange and market participants must take measures for creating necessary awareness and to ensure access of the market to the masses.

He expressed these remarks during a meeting with senior capital market professionals held at the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) on Thursday. The meeting deliberated various areas possessing huge potential for further development and growth, which include the debt market, derivatives and new listings.

The SECP chairman mentioned that outreach of the market, investor education and new products were essential for deepening and widening of the market and emphasized that corporate fundamentals and economic indicators were encouraging and should have positive impact on the market which needs to be highlighted and explained to investors.

He praised the development in the mutual fund industry and its expansion through opening of various new accounts and advised continuation of such efforts. He expressed satisfaction over the functioning of the risk management regime currently in place despite the volatility in the market. He said that the SECP was also closely monitoring the market through a dedicated team and specialised Systemic Risk Management Department.

The market participants lauded the reforms introduced by the SECP under the leadership of Chairman Zafar Hijazi and his efforts for the development of the capital market and mutual fund industry. The participants suggested implementation of some further measures which the SECP agreed to review.

The SECP chairman expressed that the SECP, in close liaison with the market players, has achieved a lot of milestones which include integration of three exchanges, divestment of PSX to Chinese anchor investor, Pakistan’s successful inclusion in MSCI Emerging Market Index, higher compliance level with IOSCO benchmarks and self-listing of PSX. “All these reforms have helped in image building of our market and the country,” he added. He concluded that the reform process was a continuous one and should be implemented rigorously in line with the SECP Capital Market Development Plan.