Thomas Murray sets the Central Securities Depository Risk Assessment for the Astana International Exchange CSD at ‘A’ with Outlook ‘On Watch’

08 January 2020

Thomas Murray, the global post-trade risk and custody specialists, has completed the first time CSD risk assessment of Astana International Exchange Central Securities Depository (AIX CSD) and assigned an overall risk assessment of ‘A’, which denotes a ‘Low Risk’.

The overall assessment of ‘A’ reflects the weighted average of the eight individual risk components and indicates a low risk exposure profile with ‘On Watch’ outlook. This grade places AIX CSD above the average for Eurasian CSDs (A-) and a notch below the average for Asia Pacific CSDs (A+) covered by Thomas Murray.

The market was launched in November 2018 within the jurisdiction of Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC) and since then, the AIX CSD and its parent company Astana International Exchange (AIX) have been working on implementing a model that meets the needs of its participants through simple, innovative, and relatively secure and efficient practices.

Jim Micklethwaite, Director, Head of Operations for Thomas Murray said:

“Thomas Murray is delighted to announce the first-time overall risk assessment of AIX CSD. The assessment recognises the accomplishment of AIX CSD in launching a secure and efficient post-trade infrastructure in a short space of time. We will monitor AIX CSD’s improvements as the market grows and they continue to adopt international best practices.”

Anna Kolesnichenko, CEO of AIX CSD said:

“Thomas Murray’s very first assessment of the AIX CSD as A, equivalent to low risk, is highly encouraging for us given that the CSD had been in operation for less than one year when it was assessed. Considering that Thomas Murray is the unchallenged global benchmark provider for CSD assessments, we believe that this grade will act as a catalyst for Tier-1 custodians to join the AIX CSD. We also look forward to further collaboration with Thomas Murray in assessing the progress made by the AIX CSD over time.”

The CSD risk assessment reviews and assesses the risk exposures for investors associated with the processes the CSD has in place to facilitate the safekeeping and the clearing and settlement of securities, where applicable. It assesses eight key risks (assessment components). The methodology considers the capabilities of the depository and the quality and effectiveness of its operational infrastructure. It also assesses the depository’s willingness and ability to protect its participants or clients from losses. As part of the assessment, the scope and quality of the depository’s services is assessed. The assessments are on a consistent global scale, using the familiar AAA to C grading scale. Once the grading is assigned there is an ongoing surveillance process to monitor the depository.

Thomas Murray maintains proprietary assessments of over 140 CSDs globally as part of the Thomas Murray Depository Risk Assessment services.

The full Thomas Murray report is available to interested parties upon request.

For further information contact:

Jim Micklethwaite

Director, Head of Operations 

Thomas Murray         

 +44 (0) 208-600-2300

[email protected]

Anna Kolesnichenko

Chief Executive Officer


+7 (7172) 23 5305

[email protected] 

Reference information:

AIX was formed in 2017 within the Astana International Financial Centre development framework. AIX shareholders are AIFC, Goldman Sachs, the Shanghai stock exchange, the silk Road Fund, and NASDAQ, which also provides the AIX trading platform. The exchange operates within a regulatory environment based on the principles of English common law, thus providing a reliable investment environment. The mission of AIX is to develop an active capital market in Kazakhstan and the region by providing clear and favorable conditions for attracting financing to private and public businesses. AIX develops special segments for mining companies as well as infrastructure projects under the Belt and Road initiative. More details:

Thomas Murray is a specialist custody risk assessment, risk management and research firm specialising in the global securities services industry. Thomas Murray was established in 1994. The Company monitors and analyses over 320 custodians globally and evaluates the risk of over 140 CSDs, 30 CCPs and over 90 capital market infrastructures. The company has a strong position as a provider of public and private risk assessments on global custodians, domestic custodian banks and capital market infrastructures.

AIX CSD. Astana International Exchange Central Securities Depository Limited (AIX CSD) is a private company incorporated under the Acting law of the AIFC responsible for daily cash and securities settlement and depositary activities. AIX CSD holds a commercial license from the Registrar of Companies of the Astana Financial Services Authority (AFSA). AFSA, where AIX CSD is incorporated, also acts as the AIX CSD’s Regulator. AIX CSD is solely owned by AIX.

Media Contact
Yelena Pak
Head of Communications
Tel: +7 (7172) 23 53 94
Email: [email protected]