MoU reinforces commitment in promotion of investor protection, financial literacy
Islamabad—The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with CFA Society Pakistan (CFASP) a global association of investment professionals in 145 countries, to jointly raise awareness of investor rights and establish the standards of professional excellence in investment management in Pakistan.
The MOU sets the framework for collaboration on promotion of investor rights and financial literacy, and emphasizes the importance of the Statement of Investor Rights awareness among both investors and investment management professionals.
This collaboration will help advocate the highest level of ethical standards and ensure fair practices and transparency, all crucial to the sustainable growth and development of Pakistan’s capital and financial industries. Terming the partnership a very timely move, the SECP Chairman, Zafar Hijazi, said that protecting investors’ interests, ensuring fair practices and complete transparency in the markets in regulators’ primary responsibility.
He suggested that instead of going through traditional ways, there is a need to adopt modern methods to enhance the public’s awareness of financial matters and highlighting invertors’ rights. Hijazi said that independent research reports should be available to investors, therefore there is a need to establish an independent research institute on Pakistan’s capital market. Such an institute can be set up in collaboration of SECP, ICAP and ICMA etc, he added. He appreciated the CFA Society Pakistan for joining hands to spread financial literacy and awareness about the investor rights.
“This MOU is a milestone that marks a long-term, established relationship between the SECP, CFA Society Pakistan and CFA Institute,” said Mr. Paul Smith, CFA, President and CEO of CFA Institute.
“Working hand in hand to support positive developments for Pakistan’s capital markets, individual investors, and the investment management profession as a whole, our work with the SECP and CFA Society Pakistan is a case study of how regulators and industry practitioners can effectively work together to improve the standards of professional excellence in capital markets.”
As a volunteer group of practitioners, we at CFA Society Pakistan strive to give back to society through many different ways to promote investor protection, said Ashraf Bava, CFA, President of CFA Society Pakistan. “Having already conducted knowledge sessions in close collaboration with the SECP to help develop awareness and educate investors on investment products and market developments, the MOU is a major step forward for the capital markets of our country and ultimately, in gaining the trust of investors.”
The MOU builds on an already strong relationship dating back to 2008 with the implementation of the Analyst Certification Program, designed to develop requisite minimum standards of knowledge and professional practice for analysts working in the financial sector. In recent years, CFA Institute also supported a consultation on the Code of Corporate Governance and provided various investor-related activities and scholarships for SECP officials for the CFA Program, including education workshops and Putting Investor First activities to raise awareness on investors’ rights and ensure investment professionals respect them.
The SECP has officially recognized the curriculum of the CFA Program, an international professional credentialing program offered by CFA Institute and widely considered to the gold standard for qualification in the investment management industry. As part of the SECP recognition, all CFA charter holders are given a waiver to Fundamentals of Capital Markets course which is one of the two exams mandatory for all financial intermediaries in Pakistan.