Asset managers are increasingly looking to Australia as a source of growth and as a gateway to the Asia Pacific region. This overview will assist managers navigate the Australian regulatory landscape.
Financial Services Licensing
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) administers a licensing regime for "financial services" providers. Under the regime, providers must generally hold an Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) and meet various compliance, conduct and disclosure obligations.
The regime can apply to entities operating outside Australia where they provide services to Australian clients. In particular, foreign asset managers who do any of the following are likely to fall within Australia's licensing regime:
- establishing, managing or acting as trustee of a collective investment vehicle in Australia, such as a managed fund, limited partnership, investment company, mortgage trust or property trust
- operating, managing or acting as trustee of a collective investment vehicle outside Australia which invites Australian clients to invest
- entering into individual investment mandates with Australian clients
- promoting and distributing collective investment vehicles or other financial products to Australian clients
- giving Australian clients advice about securities, collective investment vehicles, government and corporate bonds, derivatives, foreign exchange, general insurance, life insurance, superannuation or other financial products
- trading in or having custody of financial products on behalf of Australian clients.
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