What changed in your business over the last year and what was your biggest achievement?
Over the past year, the Athens Stock Exchange has seen remarkable growth. Perhaps the most noteworthy achievement has been our position as a global leader, ranking second among international stock exchanges in terms of performance. Additionally, we've experienced a substantial surge in our daily trading volume, reaching levels not seen in the past 15 years. This remarkable success underscores the renewed trust of investors in the Greek stock market and our capacity to attract both domestic and international investments. It's worth noting that due to the significant increase in the Athens Stock Exchange in 2023 among other things, the Economist ranked Greece at the top of the list of 35 countries with the best economic performance for 2023, for the second time in a row.
What is your most important project this year (regulatory or otherwise)?
In the year ahead, our primary focus is to leverage Greece's recent achievement of an investment-grade rating to attract and strengthen investor interest. To achieve this goal, we are actively engaged in evolving our market regulations, collaborating closely with the regulatory authorities to implement measures that will enhance liquidity in both our Main and Alternative markets. Our aim is to increase the visibility of these markets and enhance the profiles of our listed companies. We are also proactively exploring opportunities to expand our international roadshows, with a strategic focus on European capitals, the United States and the Middle East. Additionally, we are committed to advancing our technological capabilities to provide cutting-edge trading and post-trading services.
What are you most excited for in 2024?
We are particularly optimistic about the opportunities that lie ahead in 2024. With our well-defined strategy and the ongoing collaboration with the ecosystem, coupled with the strong performance of the Greek economy and the recent attainment of investment-grade status by the country, we are poised for another year of substantial growth. We are particularly looking forward to the Athens Stock Exchange being included in the 'watch list' for the transition to 'developed markets' status in 2024. This prospect would enable us to expand our international reach, attract new investors, and make even greater contributions to the growth of our market and the ongoing economic development of Greece.
What are your biggest opportunities?
Some of our most promising opportunities revolve around expanding our global footprint and attracting foreign investment. Greece's growing allure to investors, as demonstrated by various studies conducted by international organizations, like EY's recent 2023 Attractiveness Survey, provides a solid foundation for our efforts. To capitalise on this trend, in 2023 we organised five European roadshows to promote our market, with our flagship event taking place in London last November in collaboration with Morgan Stanley. This month, we are expanding our market promotion to the United States at the inaugural JP Morgan Greek Investment Conference, taking place on June 25 in New York, with the participation of JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.
Additionally, we recognize significant potential in the field of sustainable finance, aligning with the global shift towards ESG investing. Our joint partnership with Air Carbon Exchange (ACX) to launch Europe's first Voluntary Carbon Market, as we announced in 2023, is a particularly exciting initiative with very substantial growth prospects.
What do you see as the key themes and trends for your exchange and market infrastructure in 2024?
In 2024, we anticipate several key themes and trends shaping our exchange and market infrastructure. These include the continued digitalisation of our services, the rise of sustainable and responsible investment in the ecosystem, increased regulatory scrutiny, and the importance of cybersecurity. However, above all, our unwavering commitment to our people, both colleagues and clients, remains the most crucial trend and fundamental value for our brand. Embracing these trends while maintaining our dedication to transparency and innovation will be instrumental in our success.
The views, thoughts and opinions contained in this Focus article belong solely to the author and do not necessarily reflect the WFE’s policy position on the issue, or the WFE’s views or opinions.