DME (Dubai Mercantile Exchange) has been named the "Exchange of the Year" for Australasia and Middle East & Africa by leading industry publication FOW.
DME beat off stiff competition from the other Dubai-based exchange, DGCX, to win the coveted title, in what organisers described as a unanimous decision:
"The exchange has spent the year setting new records on its flagship Oman Crude Oil contract and has taken great steps in the establishment of the contract as a new global benchmark. It has continued to win new clients and gained significant credibility among local refiners,” said a statement on FOW’s website.
"However, the big development for the exchange during the year was February's deal with the CME Group that saw the Chicago-headquartered exchange increase its stake to 50% while the Oman Investment Fund upped its stake to 29% marking a significant vote of confidence in the exchange and its aim of building out a global oil benchmark from the world's largest exchange group."
Speaking at the Awards dinner in London on Dec 6, DME CEO, Christopher Fix, said: “I am truly delighted to collect this award and I would like to thank the judges and team at FOW for recognizing the hard work we’ve put into the DME this year. This is a real endorsement of our change in strategy and proof that our new approach is attracting attention, bringing in new players and above all increasing confidence and belief in the DME and our benchmark crude oil futures contract, DME Oman.
“DME Oman is the largest physically delivered crude oil futures contract in the world and the only credible benchmark for oil produced and consumed East of Suez. Our volumes are increasing in all the areas that really matter – front month window trading, down the curve and Open Interest, and we’ve got new players participating in the exchange, such as Reliance, the world’s largest refiner.
"We're ending 2012 with record volumes in Oct and Nov and I believe we are now very well positioned to take our rightful place as the world’s third crude oil benchmark in 2013."
With Asian demand for Middle East sour crude oil increasing significantly, the exchange has also seen increased trading volumes with the equivalent of more than 3.7bn barrels of oil since launch . DME has also witnessed record levels of front month trading during the settlement window in its DME Oman Crude Oil Futures Contract. In November, average daily volumes in the window reached 1,696 contracts, a 4 per cent increase on the previous record (1,636 contracts traded in October 2012). Volumes of this level mean that more than twice the national daily production of Oman is now consistently being traded in a five minute period on DME. During the month, the Exchange also recorded its highest ever settlement window volume, with 2,545 contracts traded on November 15 eclipsing the previous record of 2,515 contracts (set on 24 April 2012).
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