The AELP Link platform of the Interconnection of Exchanges Project (AELP) was launched on 7 December 2022 at a ceremony attended by leaders and officials of African stock exchanges, the African Development Bank, investors institutions, securities dealers and the investment community. The launch had held on the margins of the General Assembly and the 2022 Annual Conference of the Fellowship Association (ASEA), organized by the Regional Stock Exchange (BRVM) in Abidjan from 7 to 9 December 2022.
The first phase of the AELP covers seven stock exchanges covering fourteen African countries (Morocco, Egypt, Nigeria, Kenya, Mauritius, South Africa and the West African Economic and Monetary Union comprising Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo). The objective of the AELP is to facilitate cross-border capital flows and investments and to connect African capital markets to a global audience. The African Development Bank (AfDB), through the through a grant from the Korea-Africa Economic Cooperation (KOAFEC) Trust Fund, supported APUA, the association bringing together 28 stock exchanges on the continent, to implement phase 1 of the project.
The implementation of the project has enabled the interconnection of the participating exchanges thanks to the integration of the AELP Link platform, a technology solution to support market integration, system routing system (ORS) and the sharing of market and order book data. Thanks to a partnership with DirectFN Ltd, AELP Link has been successfully deployed and beta tested by 30 brokers in securities and went live on November 18, 2022. The AELP has also helped strengthen the capacities of regulators and financial sector operators through training programs targeting financial market practitioners on investment practices cross-border transactions and investment rules in participating markets. Reinforcement programs capabilities have benefited financial market regulators, stockbrokers securities, depositories, central bankers and other stakeholders. A website dedicated to the AELP is online www.africanexchangeslink.com.
The promoters of the AELP (ASEA and AfDB) also supported the creation of the African Association of Securities Brokers (ASSDA) as the first pan-African platform enabling securities dealers to collaborate in the integration of capital markets and the innovation of financial products. Through the coordination of ASSDA, securities brokers have signed counterparty agreements for cross-border transactions. Finance Management and Intermediation (FGI Bourse) securities broker at the BRVM and Dyer & Blair Investment Bank, securities broker securities on the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE) made the first live transaction during the ceremony launch.
The APUA President said: With AELP, we are entering a new era of capital markets African countries where all our members will gradually transact across borders from one stock exchange African to another. This project represents a great opportunity for investors and issuers to across the continent “.
The Director of the AfDB’s Capital Markets Development Division, Mr. Ahmed ATTOUT, said: ” It is a pleasure for us to join APUA in this process which will lead to the operationalization of the AELP Link platform. The AELP is a transformation project that is part of the African Development Bank’s “High 5” priorities, in particular “Industrialize Africa” and ” Integrate Africa”, as well as with the objective of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) to establish a liberalized market to facilitate the movement of capital, facilitate investment and deepen the economic integration of the continent. We hope that the implementation of the AELP will achieve the goal expand cross-border investment and facilitate the raising of capital in businesses and the real sector in participating countries.