With the goal of furthering the bond market, considering that foreign central and local governments are acting as major participants in the international bond markets, the Financial Supervisory Committee (FSC)has amended the Taipei Exchange Rules Governing Management of Foreign Currency Denominated International Bonds (the “Rules”) byissuing an order dated April 3, 2018 (Ref. No.: Jin-Guan-Zheng-Fa-Zi-1070106121) (the “FSC Order”) to include "government bonds"in the scope of the international bonds and to allow foreign central and local governments to issue professional international bonds in Taiwan. Themain points of the amendment are as follows:
I. The “government entity” entitled to issue professional international bonds in Taiwan under the FSC Order and the Rules shall be:
(1) A foreign central government with a sovereign rating of BBB orhigher; or
(2) A foreign local government that has submitted a credit rating report indicating a bond or issuer credit rating of BBB or higher.
II. Exemptions: Besides the original exemptions for the foreign issuer'sissuance of professional international bonds,pursuant to the new Article 35 of the Rules, the foreign government issuer issuingprofessional international bondsmay be exempted from periodic reporting obligations in relation to the change of bond issuance information and the publishing of annual reports.
III. The relevant regulations applicable to the professional international bonds still apply: Interest shall be accrued at a fixed interest rate ordirect floating rate; the funds raised shall be retained as foreign currency and may not be converted into New Taiwan Dollar; the prospectus shall be prepared in compliance with international financialmarket practices; the issuance plan, issuer basic information and use of proceeds as well as the credit rating report or supporting documentation shall be filed with the Department of Foreign Exchange of the Central Bank of the Republic of China with acopy to the Taipei Exchange; relevant issuance information (along with disclosure of the credit ratings if the bond is rated) shall be posted on the FSC designated website within 15 days after the issuance; an application for listing shall be made with the Taipei Exchange; and the selling restriction shall be specified on the cover page of theprospectus.