Helal Al Marri to become chairman of DFM's new board

He replaces Essa Kazim, who has been the chairman of the emirate's financial market since its inception

A general view of the Dubai Financial Market in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, February 25, 2020. REUTERS/Christopher Pike

Dubai has appointed a new board of directors for Dubai Financial Market that will be headed by Helal Al Marri, said Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Finance, and Deputy Ruler of Dubai.

Sheikh Maktoum directed the new board to develop plans and strategies to spur growth and double the size of Dubai's financial markets to Dh3 trillion ($816.7 billion) in the coming period, the Government of Dubai Media Office said on Wednesday.

Mr Al Marri will replace Essa Kazim, chairman of Dubai Financial Market since its inception 20 years ago.

"Essa Kazim contributed to the establishment and management of the Dubai Financial Market for many years, and his efforts will always be appreciated,” said Sheikh Maktoum, who is also head of the Securities and Exchange Higher Committee.

Dubai is looking to boost its stock market and attract more listings as it seeks to tap into a growing appetite for IPOs in the region.

The emirate revealed plans to list 10 state-owned companies as part of its strategy to increase the financial market's size.

Dubai also approved a market maker fund worth Dh2bn to encourage listings from sectors such as energy, logistics and retail.

A fund worth Dh1bn will be formed to attract more technology companies to list in the local bourse and encourage innovation, Sheikh Maktoum said earlier this week.

Sheikh Maktoum was appointed by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President, Prime Minister, and Ruler of Dubai this year to supervise the financial market and the stock exchange.

The newly appointed members of the DFM board include Abdulqader Ali, chairman of the board – UAE Internal Audit Association; Yuvraj Narayan, group chief financial officer, DP World; Wesam Lootah, chief executive of the Smart Dubai Government Establishment; Abdulwahid Alulama, partner, White & Case; Moaza Al Marri, communications and marketing expert; and Mohammed Al Mari, financial and administrative expert and member of the UAE Accountants and Auditors Association.

The DFM exchange is currently dominated by financial services and real estate companies but the authorities are aiming to further diversify the sectors.

Dubai Water and Electricity Authority, the government-owned utility company, will be the first government entity to make an IPO on the DFM in the “coming months”, Sheikh Maktoum said.

IPOs in the six-member economic bloc of the GCC have picked up pace as the region recovers from the economic slowdown and government and private sector companies tap capital markets for funds.

Updated: November 03, 2021, 3:41 PM