The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has inked an agreement with the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) to cross promote Fintech firms in their respective markets. Australia has targeted Fintech as strategic for their economy. China is the largest Fintech market in the world.
The “information sharing cooperation agreement” is described as underlining the importance of Australian-China trade and the tight investment relationship between the two countries. China is Australia’s largest two-way trading partner in goods and services with an approximate value of $155.2 billion in 2016. This was up 3.7% versus the previous year. China is also the largest export market for Australia driving $93 billion in 2016. It is also the largest source of imports for Australia at $62.1 billion in 2016.
ASIC estimates that in 2016, total investment in Chinese Fintech ventures hit USD $10 billion. Digital payments transacted in China made up almost half the total global volume. So it is really huge.
ASIC Chairman Greg Medcraft commented on the agreement;
“Co-operation between regulators is essential to realise the benefits of the technological revolution. Understanding new developments and their impact in overseas markets helps us to remain proactive and forward-looking in our domestic approach. This Agreement represents an exciting opportunity for us to learn more about the Chinese fintech sector, which is renowned for its success and dynamism. We also look forward to sharing our insights and experiences on regtech with the CSRC.”
His peer on the other side of the agreement, Shiyu Liu, CSRC Chair, added;
“In the past few years, the rapid development of fintech has created ample opportunities to introduce new financial services, enhance financial inclusion and fulfill investors’ needs. However, financial market regulators around the globe also face new requirements and challenges posed by market innovations. The Agreement between CSRC and ASIC will provide an effective channel for timely exchange of information on fintech developments and regulatory issues, and enhance regulatory cooperation between the two authorities.’’
The framework describes information sharing between the two regulators on emerging market trends and developments, as well as regulatory developments pertaining to innovation in financial services. ASIC says this will enable the CSRC and ASIC to keep abreast of Fintech activity in each other’s jurisdictions, and help to inform domestic regulatory approaches in the context of a rapidly changing global financial environment. ASIC and CSRC will also share information on emerging Regtech trials.
ASIC has been forming similar agreements with financial regulators around the world. To date, ASIC has signed agreements with the Monetary Authority of Singapore, the United Kingdom’s Financial Conduct Authority, Ontario Securities Commission, Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission, the Japan Financial Services Agency, Malaysia Securities Commission, Abu Dhabi Financial Services Regulatory Authority, and the Financial Market Supervisory Authority, Switzerland. Additionally, information-sharing agreements have been signed with the Capital Markets Authority, Kenya and Otoritas Jasa Keuangan, Indonesia.