The African Exchanges Linkage Project (AELP) has launched an e-platform that allows for seamless cross-border securities trading among seven African stock exchanges representing 2,000 companies with a market capitalization of approximately $1.5 trillion.
The AELP Link Trading Platform includes stock market integration, an order routing system, and the sharing of market and order-book data. The African Securities Exchanges Association (ASEA) and the African Development Bank collaborated on AELP. The Bank is funding ASEA’s phased rollout of the project with a grant from the Korea-Africa Economic Cooperation Trust Fund (KOAFEC).
The launch took place on the sidelines of the ASEA 2022 Annual General Meeting and Annual Conference, which is being held in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, from December 7 to 9, 2022.
The launch was attended by executives from African stock exchanges, the African Development Bank, institutional investors, stockbrokers, and the investor community.
Edoh Kossi Amenounve, ASEA’s President, said, “With AELP, we are entering a new era of African capital markets where all our members will gradually transact cross-border trades from one African securities exchange to another. This project represents a great opportunity for investors and issuers across the continent.”
In its initial phase, the AELP will link seven stock exchanges in 14 different African nations, including Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Niger, Senegal, and Togo as well as Nigeria, Kenya, Mauritius, South Africa, and the West African Economic and Monetary Union.
In the wake of a beta testing phase, the AELP Trading Link became operational on November 18. With the assistance of DirectFN Ltd., the system is being implemented.
Additionally, AELP offers training courses on international investing procedures and region-specific investment regulations for financial market professionals. Financial market regulators, stockbrokers and securities dealers, custodians, central bankers, and other players have benefited from capacity-building programs.
The African Stockbrokers and Securities Dealers Association (ASSDA), a ground-breaking pan-African platform for collaboration amongst securities dealers on capital markets integration and financial product innovation, was also established with the backing of the African Development Bank and ASEA.
The African Development Bank’s Manager for Capital Markets Development, Mr. Ahmed Attout, said: ‘It is our pleasure to partner with ASEA through this process culminating in the operationalization of the African Exchanges Linkage Project Link Trading Platform. The AELP is a transformational project that aligns with the African Development Bank’s High 5 priorities, especially “Industrialize Africa” and “Integrate Africa.” It is also in tandem with the African Continental Free Trade Agreement’s objective of establishing a liberalized market to aid the movement of capital, facilitate investments and deepen the continent’s economic integration.