The Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) today, 5 November 2019, announced amendments to its Listing Requirements aimed at strengthening the listing entry criteria for both primary and secondary listings. The objective of the amendments is to protect investors by enhancing disclosures, strengthening corporate governance and improving the integrity of financial information.
The amendments are a proactive response to corporate scandals, speculation and innuendo that characterised South African financial markets in 2017 and 2018, which highlighted the need for the JSE to review its responsibilities and strengthen regulation specifically in relation to primary and secondary listings.
Most of the amendments will be effective on 2 December 2019. The JSE will however allow for a transition period and furnish listed companies with a guidance letter on the implementation of certain amendments before they become effective, affording companies more time to adhere to the amendments.
“Our role as the regulator of companies listed on the JSE is to ensure that we continue to build trust and confidence in our market. We do this through the protection of investors by ensuring continuous enhancement in the level of disclosures by listed companies so that investors can make informed investment decisions,” says Andre Visser, JSE Issuer Regulation General Manager.
In September 2018 the JSE released a consultation paper for public comment and facilitated two rounds of rigorous consultation with the market and general public. This is to ensure that engagement and input from the market is considered when amendments are made to the Listing Requirements.
We believe that the amendments we have made to the Listing Requirements will be enabling for listing companies and investors, taking into account the ever changing and evolving local and global financial markets framework. We remain open to suggestions from the market on further enhancements,” concludes Visser.