The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) is seeking submissions on certain class exemptions from the Financial Reporting Act 1993 in light of the introduction of auditor licensing requirements under the Auditor Regulation Act 2011 (ARA). The ARA, which came into effect on 1 July 2012, requires all issuers (including publicly listed companies, KiwiSaver schemes, unit trust providers and insurance companies) to have their financial statements audited by a registered New Zealand audit firm or overseas audit firm. Under the ARA, a registered audit firm can only be a general partnership, which is inconsistent with market practice in several overseas jurisdictions where audit firms can structure their firms with limited liability status.

The FMA is seeking submissions on extending the current exemptions from aspects of the Financial Reporting Act for overseas issuers who offer securities to the New Zealand public and on a proposed new exemption for dual listed issuers that have their primary listing in the United Kingdom and a secondary listing on the NZX.

The FMA's consultation paper can be viewed here. The deadline for submissions is 17 December 2012.