The Qatar Stock Exchange (QSE) will make it mandatory to all listed companies to appoint a investor relations (IR) officer and dedicate a section on IR on their website as part of promoting IR practices to enhance investment attractiveness.
The purpose of the mandatory IR Rules is to introduce a set of mandatory requirements under which each company listed on the main market of the QSE will be required to appoint an IR officer, create and maintain a dedicated investor relations section on its website, and hold at least one investor call conference, as well as submitting an annual report to the QSE on the company’s compliance with the IR rules and requirements, a bourse spokesman said.
"The IR Rules, which will be mandatory for companies listed on the QSE, will be introduced as a new section in the QSE Rulebook and will be valid for all listed companies as of October 1, 2019," he said.
As part of QSE’s commitment to create effective communication channels and improve the ongoing communication between the listed companies and the investors’ community, the Qatar Financial Markets Authority (QFMA) has approved a set of minimum requirements for the IR Rules that will become part of the QSE's Rulebook.
The QSE has issued a circular to all listed companies explaining the various aspects of these requirements. It will also hold a workshop for listed companies during the first quarter of this year to answer all inquiries raised by the listed companies.
The QSE, QFMA and the listed companies have been working together over many years to ensure that disclosure and transparency are developed through an increasing focus on IR, especially after the inclusion of Qatar in the MSCI, Standard and Poor's and FTSE emerging markets indices, which has served to increase attention in Qatar’s stock market and all its listed companies.
"With the recent changes in MiFID II, traditional corporate access is expected to change significantly. The role of the sell side is expected to shrink and the role for the buy side is expected to rise and the numbers of independent service providers will increase," QSE chief executive Rashid bin Ali al-Mansoori had said earlier.
MiFID II is a legislative framework instituted by the European Union to regulate financial markets in the bloc and improve protections for investors with the aim of restoring confidence in the industry after the financial crisis exposed weaknesses in the system.
Recent trends show that few IR teams are actively targeting Environment, Social and Governance (ESG)-focused funds, he said, quoting a research report done by IR Magazine.