DHAKA: The Securities and Exchange Commission, the stock-market watchdog, has been working since 1993 without any separate public relations department to disseminate information on its regulatory work.
As a result, common investors are being deprived of important information regularly.
According to Central Depository Bangladesh Limited (CDBL) about 22 lakh investors are directly involved with the country’s capital market. They need detailed information for doing their business smoothly in stock trade.
Though there are some publications on the website of Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) and Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE), their regulator, SEC, has long been lagging behind.
SEC was established in 1993 with a view to looking into concern of the investors. Though it has a management-information department, that, again, runs only based on web information. So, most investors don’t know about the SEC’s activities properly because of its lack of proper knowledge of information technology.
A direction was issued by the government to put up a separate public relations department in every institution to ensure dissemination of information to common people.
An official of the commission said a total of 14 departments are still working here, apart from chairman’s bureau. The departments are administration and finance department, capital issue, capital market regulatory and compliance, central depository system (CDS), corporate finance, enforcement, law, management information system (MIS), mutual fund and special purpose vehicle, registration and licensing, research and development, supervision and regulation of market and issuer company (SRMIC), supervision and regulation of intermediates (SRI) and surveillance department.
Besides, a project run by the Asian Development Bank is also working with SEC’s to develop the capital-market system.
Every section the exchange commission is important for the capital market, but, without proper PR activities, investors cannot know about the function of these departments.
On the other hand, journalists also face difficulty in getting information from the departments concerned because of lax activities of the SEC.
Anwarul Karim, Executive Director of the commission, is the only hope for them to get information from the commission.
The journalists also have to suffer for calling press briefing at short notice. They are informed about press briefing from SEC half an hour before by cell-phone call.
One investor said SEC authority sometimes takes initiatives silently on important matters like mutual-fund case, margin-loan facilities, earning ratio, and bank-loan issues.
“For this reason a negative impact is cast on the capital market. Desperation and anxiety spread out among the general investors,” he added.
Media-men on capital-market affairs said if the SEC disseminated its decision in writing, such problems would not arise.
The country’s capital market is now very broad. It is a matter of distress not having any public relations department under the commission, they observed.
BDST: 1540HRS. May 27, 2010