The African Stock Exchanges Association says it is working in partnership with the African Development Bank (AfDB) to explore ways of assisting small businesses to participate in the capital markets across the continent.
President of the association, Oscar Onyema, disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Busan, South Korea on the sideline of the ongoing Annual Meetings of the AfDB in Busan, South Korea.
Onyema said the association was also exploring ways to make its Memorandum of Understanding with the bank to work in its (association) favour in the interest of small scale businesses in Africa.
“We are trying to see how we can make ourselves attractive to entrepreneurs in Africa such that exchanges become natural destination for them in Africa.”
Onyema, who doubles as the Chief Executive Officer of the Nigeria Stock Exchange, expressed concern over the huge infrastructure gap in Nigeria, adding that the situation presented opportunities to address the challenge.
In tackling the challenges, he expressed the view that the most important measure for government was to create enabling environment that encouraged entrepreneurs to invest in infrastructure.
He said such environment should also encourage portfolio managers and other Infrastructure Funds to invest in infrastructure in Nigeria.
He said: “Our policies and environment need to be right to enhance such facilities.”
Commenting on the status of the Nigerian Stock Exchange in Africa, Onyema said: “Our exchange has done relatively well but could certainly do more, especially if we have massive support from government.”
“If you look at some other African countries, the government is closely engaged with capital markets, especially to help and facilitate the listing of other several companies because we are still in a developing stage.
“We will continue to do that with Nigerian government and a lot of positive things have come through.
“If you look at major successes the exchange has had, you will see the hand of government over time.”