Bermuda Monetary Authority sets out 2013 regulatory priorities and goals

By added on 31/01/2013

The Bermuda Monetary Authority has published its 2013 Business Plan which sets out its regulatory priorities and goals for the year. Jeremy Cox, the Authority’s Chief Executive Officer, presented the Plan to stakeholders from the public and private sector at the Authority’s Annual Meeting held at BMA House, reports Bernews.

Describing what will be another extremely busy year for the Authority, Mr Cox said, “We will work hard to ensure that Bermuda firms will continue to benefit from operating within a practical, risk-based regulatory and supervisory environment that fits the unique nature of Bermuda’s market.”

Several key areas of focus in the Plan were highlighted, including:

Bermuda Will Not Apply Solvency II-type Regime to Captives

“We can definitively state that Bermuda will not apply any Solvency II-type regime to the captive sector,” Mr Cox said, as he described plans to implement refined reporting requirements for captives this year. We will introduce a risk return as part of consolidated annual filing for captives that they will submit electronically, which will create efficiencies in the process for both the market and the Authority.

“That is the extent of our refinements. It’s good for Bermuda and the market that we can make this decision based on the proven appropriateness of our regime for captives. This step, as well as the changes to our framework for the commercial sector, reflects our ability to take independent decisions on regulatory change at a pace that’s right for Bermuda and according to what makes sense for our diverse market, while taking into account achieving global recognition for our supervisory regimes.”

Faciliating Quality New Business for Bermuda – While Retaining Effective Oversight

Mr Cox also announced regulatory projects planned for 2013 that will support initiatives identified as new business development opportunities for Bermuda. These include a new licensing and supervisory regime for Corporate Service Providers [CSP]. The Corporate Service Provider Business Act came into effect on 1st January 2013.

“Under the CSP regime the Authority will license and supervise professional service providers in Bermuda that act as agents for forming corporate entities, as well as providing other corporate services. This addresses an opportunity that industry identified some time ago for building new business in this area, while establishing appropriate oversight.”

The Authority will also be focused on the hedge fund area, participating in the on going jurisdictional effort to position Bermuda as a domicile of choice for asset managers. “Based on my own interactions with stakeholders in key markets overseas regarding hedge funds, Bermuda has the opportunity to raise its profile further and compete more aggressively in this area,”

“The Authority is also engaged as a priority with local industry participants and the Bermuda Government on developing Bermuda’s position regarding Europe’s Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive. It’s appropriate for the Authority to be part of such jurisdictional efforts to facilitate quality new business for Bermuda while ensuring we achieve regulatory objectives appropriately, in a manner that is workable for all parties.”

Balance International Cooperation with an Independent Approach to Regulation

Mr Cox also indicated that the Authority remains committed to appropriate international engagement, while implementing fit-for-purpose regulations for Bermuda. The Authority recognises the importance of contributing to, as well as preparing for, global changes that can affect the Bermuda market.

“We will continue our advocacy efforts, and to have a seat at the table within global standard setting bodies. This means we can contribute to international developments as well as determine on going relevance or impacts for Bermuda of such changes,” he said.

“Maintaining strong working relationships with key decision-makers is a very important aspect of reinforcing the credibility we have earned overseas, and supports acceptance of Bermuda’s regulatory approach globally. This also facilitates our work on group supervision of the insurance market, and the supervisory colleges programme we have introduced and will continue through this year.”