Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) says its reviewed listings requirements are part of its strategic plans to commercialise the Stock Exchange and bring it in line with the latest regulatory standards worldwide.
In an interview with The Telegraph, BSE Trading and Listing Manager Tsametse Mmolai on Monday said that having been last reviewed in the 1990s, the current listings requirements were due for a major update in order to modernise them and make them easier to use. Mmoloai stated that the new requirements shall be applied to all listed companies with effect from 1st June 2016. He added that companies applying for a listing on or after this date shall also be required comply with these requirements.
“The BSE has an obligation to both consult and educate the market on listings requirements. By ensuring that all the participants are fully educated on the regulations and requirements of the BSE, they will in turn pass on the knowledge to the public as a whole thus aiding the deepening of our market,” said Mmolai.
Asked on the rationale BSE listings requirements Workshops, he stated that they are held bi-annually in the second and fourth quarters in order to keep listed companies, advisers and other concerned parties abreast with any changes and/or improvements made to them. He further stated that the new requirements were drafted by the BSE between the second quarter of 2013 and the second quarter of 2014 through which a series of meetings were organized with participants and the regulator to review the draft.
“This process continued until the draft was approved by the BSE main committee in November 2014. Following the approval, the draft Requirements were submitted to the NBFIRA for final review and approval, which was tendered in December 2015,” he stated.
He spoke of some of the new listings requirements’ critical highlights which include the condition for Directors and key management of listed companies to have collective appropriate experience, the necessity for the audit Committee to be satisfied with Finance Director’s expertise and also that key persons must all have received a favorable vetting result from NBFIRA.
Mmolai said the criteria for main board listings include 75 percent of promoters(s’) holdings to be dematerialized and held by CSDB, subject to CSDB Rules, for 2 years and adherence to minimum subscription of P5 million from the current P1 million.
“For Venture Capital Board listings companies should be 75 percent of promoter’s(s’) holdings to be dematerialized and held by CSDB, subject to CSDB rules, for 2 years. Companies seeking to dual list on the BSE must comply with the minimum listings criteria set out under rules 2.10 and 2.11 subject to the stated number of public shareholders referred to in rule 2.10 (g) and 2.11 (b) (v) being resident in Botswana,” Mmolai noted.
He further stated that the upcoming BSE workshop scheduled for Thursday 19 May 2016 on the new listings requirements will be an opportunity to educate the market on the new requirements and also provide an interactive platform to exchange ideas with stakeholders.