On August 25, 2014, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (“MAS”), the Securities Commission of Malaysia (“SC Malaysia”) and the Securities and Exchange Commission of Thailand (“SEC Thailand”) launched the ASEAN CIS Framework (the “Framework”) to facilitate cross-border offers of retail collective investment schemes (“CIS”) in member jurisdictions (currently Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand).
Fund managers based in Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand can now offer CIS constituted and authorized in their home jurisdiction directly to retail investors in the other two ASEAN countries under a streamlined authorization process.
A set of common standards for the Framework (the “Common Standards”) has already been issued to set out the minimum experience and track record requirements for participating fund managers managing retail funds offered under the Framework as well as the investment guidelines for qualifying CIS. Please see our earlier briefing for more details, which can be found here.
Coinciding with the launch date, the MAS, SC Malaysia and SEC Thailand have also jointly published a handbook to provide guidance to fund managers on the operational aspects of the Framework (the “Handbook”).
We set out below highlights of the Handbook:
Information specifically relevant to the offer of ASEAN CIS in each of the member jurisdictions
Appendix V to the Handbook also contains information on the relevant domestic laws and regulations which are specifically relevant to the offer of ASEAN CIS in Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand. The information in Appendix V broadly covers the following:
- Application for streamlined authorization as an ASEAN CIS for offering into a host jurisdiction
- Method for submission of applications
- Place and time for submission of applications
- Supporting documents to be submitted together with the application
- Language of the documents to be submitted
- Requirements for signed declaration / certification of supporting documents
- Fee payable for the application
- Manner of issuance of confirmation of the authorization
- Requirements for simplified prospectus / key information document / product highlights sheet
- Guidance on the disclosure requirements in relation to the offering documents
- Fee for lodgment of offering documents
- Requirements for any documents to be provided on an on-going basis to the host regulator or to be distributed to investors
- NAV disclosure requirements
- Requirements to notify the host regulator / investors of significant changes or breaches
- Appointment of local intermediaries and representatives
- Manner of providing compensation where valuation errors happen
- Approval / notification requirements for termination of the offering of units of ASEAN CIS
- Tax issues / considerations for the ASEAN CIS, the qualifying CIS operator and the investors
- Foreign exchange control issues / impact on ASEAN CIS
The Handbook can be accessed here.