The Jordan Securities Commission (JSC) was established in 1997 as a public institution with financial and administrative autonomy to develop, regulate and monitor Jordan’s capital market to maintain a sound investment environment and protect investors. The JSC is entrusted with developing the capital market in accordance with international standards to secure fairness, efficiency and attract domestic and foreign investors.
To maintain market integrity, the JSC regulates, monitors, and supervises the business operations of parties under its supervision, namely the Amman Stock Exchange (ASE), the Securities Depository Center (SDC), financial services companies, public shareholding companies, investment funds and certified financial professionals. Furthermore, the JSC is committed to secure investor protection and market development and to enforcing disclosure of information regulations pertaining to the securities market.
Since its inception, the JSC has been working on developing and upgrading the regulations governing the capital market and its institutions to ensure higher levels of investor protection and transparency. It has issued relevant legislations that regulate the activities of the ASE, the SDC, financial services, and mutual funds. It enforces disclosure regulations to help investors make informed investment decisions.
The JSC is a member at the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) and it is a signatory to the IOSCO Multilateral Memorandum of Understanding (IOSCO MMoU) since February 2008, which is considered internationally as one of the indicators of the JSC’s compliance with international standards in adopting legislation and regulatory framework in the capital market. The JSC has also signed Memoranda of Understanding with a number of Arab and international counterparts.
The main International principles and standards implemented in the national capital market include the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) Principles, International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), International Auditing Standards, Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Corporate Governance Principles, and Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Anti- money Laundering Principles. A new Securities Law was issued on 22 of May, 2017. The most notable new amendments include provisions covering mutual funds that introduce legal basis for the establishment of different types of mutual funds including Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), and setting the legal reference that permits the JSC Board of Commissioners to issue mandatory corporate governance rules. The amendments also transferred the regulatory function over public shareholding companies from the Companies Controller Department (CCD) to be under the JSC’s jurisdiction.
The JSC has recently issued a number of instructions governing the capital market activities. The JSC took necessary procedures to introduce a world class electronic XBRL disclosure system to enhance disclosure of necessary information in the market. The ASE was demutualized and transformed to a public shareholding company fully owned by the government. The shares of the ASE will be partly offered to the public in the second phase.
In Cooperation with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the JSC has reached an action plan and road map towards enabling market development. It was launched on 13 December, 2016, and focuses on assisting the JSC in upgrading its legal and technical frameworks, enhancing fixed income instruments market, training capital market institutions staffs, enhancing corporate governance compliance mechanisms, demutualization of the ASE, and implanting best practices and standards in the market.