Amidst some modestly hopeful signs that Iraqis' quality of life is improving (civillian deaths are down, portions of infrastructure have been restored) and that we're planting the seeds of capitalism in Iraq, the executive director of the Iraq Stock Exchange, Taha Ahmed Abdul-Salam, said today that the exchange will start electronic trading early next year. It will also be open five days a week instead of the current three days.The new platform, from OMX Group and IBM, was supposed to be up and running this past summer, but was delayed by violence and security issues. Abdul-Salam hopes that once the new system is operational, foreign capital will flow in.
The Iraq Stock Exchange was founded on April 18, 2004, just a year and a month after the U.s. invasion. It opened to foreign investors on August 2 of this year.