The Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) has released its long awaited FAQs regarding its 31 October 2019 circular on the use of external electronic data storage providers (EDSP Circular). While there are some aspects of the FAQs which we anticipate will create practical challenges and will require some careful analysis to implement, we generally consider the FAQs to be a significant step forward and to provide much needed flexibility for the industry. Continue reading
On 18 September 2020, the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) commenced a three month consultation on a wide range of proposed changes to its Guideline on Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Financing of Terrorism (For Licensed Corporations) (Guideline) and the Prevention of Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Guideline issued by the SFC for Associated Entities (AE Guideline). Continue reading
Having initially delayed its planned consultation exercise to allow the financial services sector to focus on responding to Covid-19, the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) subsequently found the pandemic a catalyst to proceed. Therefore, at the end of May, IOSCO launched its consultation on proposed updates to the 2005 Outsourcing Principles for Market Intermediaries and the 2009 Outsourcing Principles for Markets; feedback on the proposed new Outsourcing Principles (OPs) is requested on or before 1 October 2020. The decision to proceed reflects the acknowledgement that outsourcing is a key element for consideration when assessing operational resilience across the sector.
This post gives a high level summary of the consultation, with a link to our briefing that focuses in more detail on: the scope of application; IOSCO’s definition of outsourcing; intragroup arrangements; concentration risk; and access and audit rights. To provide additional context to IOSCO’s proposals, the associated briefing also catalogues relevant proposals and initiatives which are running concurrent to the consultation exercise.
On 28 April 2020, the Hong Kong Competition Commission (HKCC) and the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) announced that they had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to enhance collaboration and exchange of information, particularly in respect of competition issues in the securities and futures industry.
The Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) has extended its deadline for licensed corporations to confirm compliance with its new data storage regulations, due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
On 31 March 2020, the SFC granted a six-month extension to the implementation deadline for aspects of its 31 October 2019 circular on the use of external electronic data storage providers (EDSPs) by licensed corporations for the storage of regulatory records (EDSP Circular).
On 7 January 2020, the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) issued two circulars to clarify aspects of the licensing obligations applicable to private equity (PE) firms and family offices which conduct business in Hong Kong.
The circulars have been issued in response to enquiries from industry participants and their professional advisers.
An overview of the key aspects covered by the circulars is set out below. New entrant PE firms and family offices should take note of the circulars when determining whether an application for a licence should be made to the SFC. Existing PE firms and family offices should also review the circulars to ensure that they comply with the relevant licensing requirements.
On 21 November 2019, the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) published a circular to licensed corporations regarding dubious private fund and discretionary account arrangements and transactions. This is part of the SFC’s ongoing efforts to tackle market and corporate misconduct.
The circular provides guidance to asset managers in considering if a proposed private fund and discretionary account arrangement or transaction is dubious, and if so, whether it should be proceeded with. The Hong Kong Monetary Authority has drawn the circular to the attention of registered institutions which engage in asset management and discretionary account management.