A planned corporate merger between Peru and Colombia’s stock markets has been put on hold until Peru’s President-elect Ollanta Humala has a chance to look over the proposal, the two exchanges said in a joint press release Monday.
“The board of directors of the Colombian Stock Exchange and the directors of the Lima Stock Exchange decided in a special meeting today …. to have the proposed corporate merger between the two bourses postponed,” it said.
The statement said it wants to present Humala’s economic team with “the details of the operation before [the deal] is finalized.”
Humala, a leftist, won Peru’s presidential election June 5. He has vowed to press his nationalist, antipoverty agenda, leading some analysts to wonder if the incoming leader might derail many of Peru’s free-market agendas, including the proposed merger of the Peru and Colombia stock exchanges. At least one of his advisors said last week, however, that Humala didn’t intend to spoil an economic formula that has helped Peru achieve steady growth for more than a decade.
The statement from the Colombian and Peruvian stock exchanges insisted Monday’s decision is “only” to postpone the merger, and that the proposal to combine the two entities remains solidly on track.
The planned merger, the two exchanges said, “will contribute in a significant way to the development of the capital markets of Peru and Colombia, and in doing so, will contribute to both countries’ economic growth.”
The merger proposal was announced in January. The Colombian exchange would take 64% of the new company and Peru’s bourse would hold the other 36%. The stock markets said at the time that a final deal on the merger could happen late this year, following approval from the respective boards and each country’s regulator.
The planned merger of the two exchanges’ corporate entities is separate from the trading integration of the stock markets in Colombia, Chile and Peru that began May 30. The Integrated Latin American Market, or MILA, created a cross-trading platform to complement the three countries’ individual trading floors, and is aimed at making it easier for investors in one country to buy stocks in companies in the other two countries.