Baltic co-operation meeting

05.11.1999 TLN

Joint Press Release of the Baltic Stock Exchanges
November 5, 1999

On November 4, 1999, the chief executives of the three Baltic Exchanges held their regular meeting in Riga to discuss the co-operation between Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian stock exchanges and their integration with the NOREX Alliance.

The three Exchanges co-ordinated their positions for the negotiations to be held between the Baltic bourses and NOREX, the alliance composed of the Stockholm and Copenhagen stock exchanges. NOREX and Baltic exchanges intend to sign the Letter of Intent before the end of the current year.

Secondly, the Exchanges approved the principles of the Baltic List of ‘blue chip’ securities, and agreed to launch it as of January 2000. The list will consist of up to 15 largest firms listed on the Official Lists of the three Exchanges, whereas no more than seven will be from one country.

All of the Baltic List companies must have a minimum market capitalisation of 15 million euros (EEK 234 million). Companies’ free float must comply with the respective European Union directive, pursuant to which at least 25 per cent of a company’s listed shares must be in public, or less if a sufficient amount of liquidity is guaranteed for the security. The financial statements of the Baltic List companies must be composed in accordance with the International Accounting Standards (IAS) in order to ensure reliability and transparency.

The exact composition of the Baltic List will be agreed on by the end of the year. Next year the Exchanges plan to launch an index to reflect the price changes in the securities listed on the Baltic List.

The chief executives of the three Baltic bourses also decided to appeal to the regulators of the Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian securities markets to express their concern about the slow progress in the areas which would enable the launch of the common Baltic securities market. The statement will regard mutual recognition of security intermediary licenses and harmonisation of requirements set for securities brokerages to provide the stock exchange members simplified access to all three markets. Only Latvian Securities Commission, however, has prepared the respective proposals to conform the law with the European Union standards. The Exchanges feel strongly that the current regulative barriers inhibit the integration of the three securities markets into single financial market.

In addition, the Exchanges discussed joint marketing strategies for the coming year and decided to launch a common internet homepage.

Additional information:

Eva Palu
Head of Investor Relations Dpt
Tallinn Stock Exchange
Tel: +372 64 08 840

Ilze Nagla
Manager of Public Relations Dpt
Riga Stock Exchange
Tel: +371 7 212 431

Diana Sokolova
Public Relations Manager
National Stock Exchange of Lithuania
Tel: +370 2 723 871

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