AIFC, Nasdaq to Cooperate on Trading Infrastructure

ASTANA – Chairman of the Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC) Kairat Kelimbetov and President and Chief Operating Officer of Nasdaq Adena Friedman recently met and signed a memorandum of understanding concerning a new exchange in Astana.

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“The new exchange, which will be established in Astana and start trading in the second half of 2017, will provide trading infrastructure in multiple asset classes, including securities, derivatives and commodities. We plan that the Astana International Exchange (AIX) will provide the integration of the domestic market with international markets and bring global liquidity providers to Astana,” Kelimbetov said.

“We welcome the AIFC’s plans to establish the new exchange infrastructure that would comply with top international standards. We look forward to establishing a long-term, strategic relationship with AIFC,” Friedman said.

Both sides expressed a desire to cooperate in the development of the AIFC. Signing the agreement is considered to be the first step for Nasdaq in supporting the AIFC in its establishment of the exchange (AIX). Further, Nasdaq has submitted a Strategic Partnership Proposal to AIFC to jointly design and implement product development, trading, clearing, settlement and regulation as well. Such cooperation includes establishing the relevant business rules for the AIX, implementing of core technologies, setting up operational procedures and carrying out personnel trainings.

In December 2015, President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev signed a Constitutional law “On the Astana International Financial Centre” (AIFC). The AIFC aims to become a leading international financial centre. English shall be the official language of the AIFC. The Kazakh government plans to attract investments to the economy, develop local capital markets, ensuring their integration with the international capital markets using the AIFC. Development of the insurance market and banking services and Islamic financing as well will be in the scope of the AIFC.

Nasdaq is the second-largest stock exchange in the U.S. It has half of all public limited companies listed and is also the second-largest stock exchange in the world after the NYSE.  Nasdaq has the highest trading volume of all electronic stock exchanges in the world. Its name is an acronym for the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotations.

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