London Stock Exchange renews support for Sri Lanka

  • Expresses willingness to offer expertise on strengthening critical market infrastructure  at CSE
  • To facilitate listings for blue chips to raise capital; attract more foreign investments
  • Highlights MillenniumIT as an integral part of LSE with over 700 staff and powering 50 intl. exchanges

All smiles: London Stock Exchange Group CEO Xavier Rolet (left), Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake, Colombo Stock Exchange Chairman Vajira Kulatilaka, CSE Director Ray Abeywardena, Securities and Exchange Director General Vajira Wijegunawardane, CSE CEO Rajeeva Bandaranaike and LSE CEO Nikhil Rathi (partly hidden) elated following the market opening at the LSE by Sri Lanka on Friday

By Nisthar Cassim
Global giant the London Stock Exchange last week expressed keenness to help the new Government in boosting Sri Lanka’s capital market, foreign investments and private sector.

The offer of help and its expertise was conveyed by LSE Group CEO Xavier Rolet to Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake after the latter rang the opening bell of the London stock market on Friday.

“LSE, with its prowess as a diversified international market infrastructure and capital markets business, is a perfect partner for an emerging economy such as Sri Lanka to draw more foreign investments. We stand ready to help Sri Lanka,” Rolet said in a brief speech following the market opening at the LSE, the day after the Colombo Stock Exchange concluded a successful Invest Sri Lanka Forum in London.

Having commended the new Government for its planned initiatives to modernise the economy, encourage entrepreneurship and generate growth opportunities, Rolet said that LSE could help boost foreign direct investment as well as facilitate a vibrant capital market.
Facilitation of the listing of blue chips on the London Stock Exchange, expertise to strengthen critical market infrastructure as well as restructuring of state-owned enterprises were also offered by the LSE.

Rolet said the LSE Group operates a broad range of international equity, bond and derivatives markets, including London Stock Exchange; Borsa Italiana; MTS, Europe’s leading fixed income market; and Turquoise, a pan-European equities MTF. It is also home to one of the world’s leading growth markets for SMEs, AIM. Through its platforms, the group offers international businesses and investors unrivalled access to Europe’s capital markets.

Post-trade and risk management services are a significant part of the group’s business operations. In addition to majority ownership of multi-asset global CCP operator, LCH. Clearnet Group, LSEG operates CC&G, the Italian clearing house; Monte Titoli, the T2S-ready European settlement business; and globeSettle, the group’s newly established CSD based in Luxembourg.

Rolet said the group was a global leader in indexing and analytic solutions and its large family of indices had a combined value of over $ 12 trillion. LSEG is also one of the largest clearing houses, handling over $ 600 trillion annually.

The Group CEO in his remarks also highlighted the key role played by MillenniumIT, which it acquired in 2009.

“When LSE acquired MillenniumIT it had around 300 employees. We migrated many of LSE platform and those across the Continent to technology of MiT, which is now a global company employing over 700 staff. It is a vital part of the LSE Group, and via MiT, LSE is a high quality major employer in Sri Lanka,” Rolet emphasised.

He said that MiT was powering not only the London and European markets but also exchanges in several others countries such as South Africa, and MiT technology now powered over 50 markets. “We are proud to have made MiT truly global,” the LSE Group CEO added.

Minister Karunanayake said that ringing the market opening bell was a “great honour” for Sri Lanka and him personally and appreciated the role and contribution by the LSE Group in Sri Lanka. In response to Rolet’s suggestion of encouraging the listing of Sri Lankan firms on the LSE, the Finance Minister said a win-win arrangement would be highly beneficial.

He also said that the upcoming Budget of the new Government would detail a host of opportunities for the private sector in terms of raising capital for expansion.

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