FAQs

1   What is the difference between the securities commission and stock exchange ?


The securities commission (the Syrian Commission on Financial Markets and Securities) is the authority responsible for regulating and monitoring the stock exchange. The stock exchange (Damascus Securities Exchange) is the venue for the sale and purchase of securities in an organized and legal mannar.

2   What is the difference between the primary market and over-the-counter ?


Comparisons are made between the primary market and the secondary market on one hand and between the organized market and the OTC (over-the-counter market) on the other. The primary market is where shares are sold for the first time, thus the seller is the issuer itself and the buyer is either an individual or a legal person (company), while securities ownership is traded in the secondary market or the stock exchange where the seller is the current holder of the security and the buyer is a person wishing to purchase it. The Damascus Securities Exchange which is the secondary market in Syria is divided into an organized market and an OTC. The companies listed in the organized market have better indicators than those in the OTC. Companies in the organized market differ by their larger capital and bigger number of shareholders as well as the conditions they meet in accordance with the Listing Regulations issued by the DSE.

3   Does the owner of a company having a well-known brand name receive benefit when converting the business to a joint stock company?


Such owner may benefit from the value of the well-known brand name when revaluating goodwill according to the procedures defined by Decree 61 concerning the revaluating of intangible assets. Thus, the company wishing to convert to a joint stock company shall revaluate all its assets including goodwill in order to protect the rights of founders, who have succeeded in developing the goodwill.

4   What is in it for me if I converted my private company to a joint stock one?


  1. You may get financing with relatively facilitated terms through capital increase or issuance of bonds.
  2. You may benefit from government facilitations especially in taxation.
  3. You may enlarge your company forming a strong competition; diverse your production; make alliances; and achieve competitiveness through the economy of scale and cost cuts.

5   I have an amount of money and I wish to buy stocks, what should I do?


First, you open an account at a licensed brokerage firm. You may find a list of licensed firms on the SCFMS’s website with all contact information. When consulting the customer care employee, make sure to be well informed of the stock exchange, the firm, the procedures of opening an account, and your identification at the Clearing and Central Depository Center in order to get your own investor ID number. Provide the firm with true data about yourself. Read the agreement of dealing in securities thoroughly before signing it to be fully aware of your rights and obligations. Having opened an account and been identified at the Center, you may contact your broker to authorize him to buy you stocks whose value has been already deposited by you in your cash account at the firm.

6   What is a settlement bank?


Settlement is the procedure executing a trading contract and transferring ownership from the seller to buyer with final and unconditional settlement of the value of stocks. A bank of settlement is the bank certified by the Stock Exchange to settle transactions of listed securities and guarantee the full payment of their values. The Central Bank of Syria is currently responsible of all settlements.

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