Tuesday 24, October 2017 by

State Street Global Advisors reviews Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 Plan for Economic Transformation

State Street Global Advisors (SSGA), the asset management business of State Street Corporation (NYSE: STT), today announced that President and CEO Ron O’Hanley will be a featured speaker at the inaugural Future Investment Initiative (FII) Conference to be held on 24 to 26 October in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

The conference, sponsored by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, is aimed at convening business leaders and investment thinkers from around the world to discuss the future of the global economy and financial markets as Saudi Arabia embarks on historic changes to its own economy.

O’Hanley’s panel, entitled “The Wish List: What Do Investors Want from Policy Makers,” will examine what government leaders and regulators can do to promote sustainable growth. Expanding on a report SSGA issued today at the conference on transforming Saudi Arabia’s capital markets, O’Hanley will discuss the connection between good governance and the efficient allocation of capital and labour as the underpinnings of sustainable growth.

“At this historic inflection point in Saudi Arabia’s development, we think they have a compelling opportunity to learn from the experiences of other countries and avoid some of the pitfalls,” said O’Hanley.

O’Hanley will be joined by Thomas Barack, Executive Chairman of Colony Northstar, John Strangfeld, Chairman and CEO of Prudential Financial, and Alan Schwartz, Executive Chairman of Guggenheim Partners, among other executives. The panel will be moderated by Rob Cox, global editor of Reuters Breakingviews.

The panel is scheduled for 15:15 GMT / GMT+3 on Wednesday, 25 October.

SSGA’s report, entitled Transforming Saudi Arabia’s Capital Markets: Strengthening the Financial Triad, examines Saudi Arabia’s plans to bring about sweeping economic transformation. The report was penned by SSGA’s Elliot Hentov, head of policy and research, Altaf Kassam, head of the strategy and research group, Abhishek Kumar, lead portfolio manager for emerging markets, and Alexander Petrov, an associate in the policy and research group.

Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 roadmap for the future includes plans to make the country a global financial capital. SSGA’s report explains that the country enjoys a sound banking system and a rapidly emerging equity market, but its bond market remains underdeveloped. According to SSGA, the privatisation of Saudi state assets, including Aramco, its national petroleum and national gas company, could deliver a boost to the depth and sophistication of Saudi’s equity market. Moreover, it could have positive spill over effects into other areas of finance and policy.

According to the report, while Saudi Arabia has a strong legacy as a sovereign investor in foreign markets, its local financial system needs to deepen across all sectors. Stronger capital markets would work together with the country’s banking system to channel investment and ensure efficient capital allocation across the economy. In the absence of such channels, many worthwhile business ventures never take place, capital is misallocated and underutilised, and economic growth remains below its potential.