ASIC has signed a cooperation agreement with the Swiss Financial Markets Authority (FINMA) and with the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) and an information sharing agreement with the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC).
Under its agreement with FINMA, ASIC is able to refer innovative businesses for support and vice versa. Switzerland has long been regarded as a hub for fintechs in areas like wealth management, comparative consulting, crypto finance, data management, payment services and lending.
The cooperation agreement with DFSA enables both parties to refer innovative fintech businesses to each other for support through their respective fintech functions, creating a pathway for businesses to operate in the Dubai International Financial Centre, engaging with DFSA, and vice versa. The agreement facilitates information sharing between the two regulators and also specifically recognises the importance of regulatory technology, providing that ASIC and the DFSA intend to deepen their partnership by sharing information on regtech trials.
The information sharing cooperation agreement with the CSRC strengthens the Australia-China trade and investment relationship by allowing the two regulators to exchange information on market trends and developments regarding financial services and innovation. This particular agreement also specifies certain forms of collaboration by sharing information on regulatory technology trials. China is a global leader in relation to fintech investment and is Australia’s largest two-way trading partner.
These agreements follow similar agreements (discussed here and here) between ASIC and the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission, the Monetary Authority of Singapore, the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority, Canada’s Ontario Securities Commission, the Abu Dhabi Global Market Financial Services Regulatory Authority, the Capital Markets Authority of Kenya, and Indonesia’s Otoritas Jasa Keuangan.
In addition, Treasurer Scott Morrison has announced a FinTech Bridge collaboration agreement with the UK. Extending beyond the power of ASIC’s current collaboration agreements, the Bridge will enable collaboration at the industry, regulator and government levels to “identify emerging trends, share policy developments and better position firms for the challenges of entering a foreign market.” The Bridge will also allow Australian fintechs to expand into the UK or pursue partnerships with companies in the UK.