Hong Kong, France sign agreement on cross-border fund sales

PUBLISHED : Monday, 10 July, 2017, 10:42pm
UPDATED : Monday, 10 July, 2017, 10:42pm

Hong Kong and French regulators have signed a document that would simplify the process to approve fund products to cross sell in each other’s market, according to the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) on Monday.

The SFC said it had signed an memorandum of understanding with its French counterpart , Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF) for a mutual recognition agreement.

Under the agreement, the French regulator will adopt a simple authorisation process to approve Hong Kong public funds to be sold to the French public.

Likewise, the SFC, which is Hong Kong’s financial regulator, will let French UCITS funds to be distributed to retail investors after a simple authorisation process.

This is the first agreement between regulators of Hong Kong and a member of the European Union for cross-border fund sales, which included various types of products – equity, bonds, currencies or mixed assets funds.

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“Promoting the development of Hong Kong’s asset management industry is one of our strategic objectives. This new cooperation framework is an important milestone for Hong Kong’s continuous development as an international asset management centre as it opens up the opportunity for Hong Kong funds to be sold in one of the leading markets in the European Union, ” said Ashley Alder, the SFC’s chief executive.

Gérard Rameix, chairman of the AMF, described the agreement as “a newly established bridge between France and Hong Kong” that will help French fund houses go global.

“It reflects the attractiveness of Paris as a financial centre and demonstrates that there is a demand from one of the leading markets in Asia for French asset management companies and products, Rameix said.

“We look forward to the opportunities this agreement will bring to our market, as well as to the enhanced cooperation between the AMF and the SFC to ensure that our industry players operate in a clear and robust supervisory framework and that our investors receive proper protection,” Rameix said.