The Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) will commence trading of digital assets on its stock exchange from June 2020. Blockstation, a Canadian-based partner company, will be providing the platform for trading to occur, which will be hosted in Jamaica. The JSE announced its partnership with the company approximately one year ago and have conducted two trials for the trading of digital securities since then. The initiative emerged due to an upsurge in the virtual currency market and the continuing popularity of the cryptocurrency, bitcoin. Four companies have pledged the initial batch of security tokens, which operate similar to shares of a company. These are BRED, based in Ontario, WiPay from Trinidad and Tobago, VeleV Capital, an investment company from Canada, and Lotus Energy, a renewable energy-based company from Australia.
The JSE Group Managing Director, Marlene Street Forrest, stated that the digital portal will allow anyone with an account with an approved broker to trade online, comparable to equities. “When you go into the system the tokens will be priced and an individual will subscribe for how much they want. The arrangement for how you are going to settle the transaction will be between yourself and the broker,” she said. She further stated that the JSE digital platform will be launching with the approval of regulators, which has been part of its attraction for foreign companies. Two of the companies have already submitted their prospectuses and are currently awaiting approval from the Financial Services Commission (FSC) to make their offer to stock market investors. Prospectuses are also submitted to Blockstation.