The Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) has made seven class orders that conditionally exempted foreign financial service providers (FFSP) from the requirement to hold an AFS licence where they are regulated under overseas regulatory regimes that ASIC has assessed as sufficiently equivalent to the Australian financial services regimes (Sufficient equivalence relief).
The relevant class orders are as follows:
|Where the FFSP is regulated||Relevant Class order|
|United Kingdom||Class Order [CO 03/1099] UK FSA regulated financial service providers|
|United States||Class Order [CO 03/1100] US SEC regulated financial service providers,
Class Order [CO 03/1101] US Federal Reserve and OCC regulated financial service providers,
Class Order [CO 04/829] US CFTC regulated financial services providers
|Singapore||Class Order [CO 03/1102] Singapore MAS regulated financial service providers|
|Hong Kong||Class Order [CO 03/1103] Hong Kong SFC regulated financial service providers|
|Germany||Class Order [CO 04/1313] German BaFin regulated financial service providers|
The above licensing relief instruments are relied on by many FFSPs to provide particular financial services in Australia to wholesale clients without the requirement to hold an Australian financial services licence. The effect of these instruments together with other transitional instruments issued by ASIC is that the relief is due to expire on 27 September 2018.
ASIC has announced a consultation process (CP 301) pursuant to which it will engage with industry to determine the treatment of FFSPs in the future. Due to the consultation processes, ASIC has since extended the relief for 12 months until 30 September 2019 while it consults with stakeholders. In addition, the consultation proposes a further 12 month transition period to 30 September 2020.
ASIC is currently inviting submissions by 31 July 2018.
Our team of financial services specialists can assist with any regulatory advice queries on the application of the FFSP relief and/or submissions to ASIC during the consultation period.
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