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24.05.2019 Business & Finance

Gov’t Hailed For Listing State Own Enterprises On Stock Exchange

By Clement Akoloh
Ekow Afedzie, Deputy Director of GSE
Ekow Afedzie, Deputy Director of GSE

The Deputy Managing Director of the Ghana Stock Exchange, Ekow Afegyi, has hailed government for its decision to list some State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) on the Ghana Stock Exchange in order to offload majority of the companies’ shares to private hands.

According to the Deputy Managing Director, the move by government is directly in line with the initial purpose for setting up the Ghana Stock Exchange in the first place.

He is optimistic the outcome will greatly enhance the performance of the SOEs.

“If you go back to history and look at the status of the Ghana Stock Exchange, the premise for setting it up was to help government privatize State Owned Enterprises through the market. That has not happened over the years,” he observed in an interview on Joy Business.

The government has disclosed plans to offload shares in selected State Enterprises to be listed on the Stock Exchange to allow the private sector to be part of the ownership structure of these Enterprises.

The Chief Executive of the State Enterprises Commission Stephen Asamoah Boateng revealed in an interview that discussions with the finance ministry were far advanced to float some of the state enterprises on the stock market.

Following from this, Mr. Afegyi shared the view that diluting state shares in investment firms in the private sector by allowing them to participate in the decision making processes, is one of the best decisions that can turn around the fortunes of these dormant companies as well as encourage more listings on the market.

“Only a few companies have been privatized. So, if a top government official is coming back to say that we need to take a look at State Owned Enterprises, to find out the good ones or the ones that we can make sure that they go out there and recapitalize on the market and allow Ghanaians to participate, then that is certainly good news and it can impact greatly on the market,” he said.

The Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) is the principal stock exchange of Ghana. The exchange was incorporated in July 1989 with trading commencing in 1990. It currently lists 42 equities (from 37 companies) and 2 corporate bonds.

All types of securities can be listed. Criteria for listing include capital adequacy, profitability, spread of shares, years of existence and management efficiency. It is currently located within the Cedi House in Accra.