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In this regular update, we round-up FinTech-related regulatory developments for the week ending 7 May 2021.



IOSCO: Report on thematic review of business continuity plans

The International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) has published a report on the thematic review of business continuity plans with respect to trading venues and intermediaries. The report recommends that regulators should require trading venues to:

  • have in place mechanisms to help ensure the resilience, reliability and integrity (including security) of critical systems; and
  • establish, maintain and implement as appropriate a business continuity plan. [6 May 2021]



BIS Innovation Hub: G20 green finance challenge

The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) Innovation Hub and the Bank of Italy, with the Italian G20 Presidency, have announced the G20 TechSprint Initiative to highlight the potential for new technologies to resolve some of the most pressing challenges in green and sustainable finance.

The BIS Innovation Hub and the Italian G20 Presidency have published three high-priority operational problems and invite private firms to develop innovative technological solutions. The problem statements identify the following challenges, highlighted by submissions from G20 finance ministries and central banks: data collection, verification and sharing; analysis and assessment of transition and physical climate-related risks; and better connecting projects and investors.

The closing date for applications is 31 May, with shortlisted teams announced on 14 June and invited to showcase their prototypes in a workshop in August for feedback from national authorities and experts.  An independent expert panel organised and sponsored by the Bank of Italy will judge the submissions and identify the most promising solutions. Selected solutions will be announced in October and cash prizes awarded. [6 May 2021]






G20 Multistakeholder Forum - Consumers' Awareness, Protection and Blockchain for Traceability in the Digital Economy

The Italian Presidency of the G20 has published a press release which provides an overview of the latest meeting of the G20 Multistakeholder Forum on Consumers’ Awareness, Protection and Blockchain for Traceability in the Digital Economy. The meeting, organised by the Italian Ministry of Economic Development in the context of the G20 priorities for the Digital Economy identified by the Italian Presidency, was aimed at highlighting the risks and challenges that may arise for consumers from the growing use of online transactions, but also the potential that technology can bring to transparency and consumer awareness. It was attended by representatives of the G20 countries, international organizations, experts, consumer representatives, businesses and representatives of the civil society. [6 May 2021]





Financial regulators publish third edition of plan for upcoming work

The FCA and the BoE have issued press releases on the publication of the Financial Services Regulatory Initiatives Forum's third edition of the Regulatory Initiatives Grid.

The Grid publication follows on from a one-year pilot exercise and it sets out initiatives that are in the regulatory pipeline in, amongst others, the following areas: operational resilience, open banking, cryptoassets, central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) and stablecoins. [7 May 2021]





FCA: Speech by CEO on regulation for a different world

The FCA has published a speech delivered by its CEO, Nikhil Rathi, on regulation for a different world. Mr Rathi's speech touched upon the regulatory landscape in a post-Brexit and post-Covid world, noting that the FCA will continue to be a regulator that supports open, competitive markets with responsible innovation. He also highlighted the wider issues on international regulatory cooperation; environmental, social and governance (ESG) and sustainability; and, dealing with financial crime. [6 May 2021]

PRA: Speech on operational resilience

The PRA has published a speech entitled 'Operational resilience - outcomes in practice', delivered by Deputy CEO, Lyndon Nelson. Among other things, Mr Nelson spoke about:

  • how supervision of the financial sector in the UK has changed over the last 25 years;
  • the relationship between PRA and FCA policy on operational resilience;
  • how the UK approach links to that taken by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS); and
  • the merits of outcome-based regulation of operational resilience. [5 May 2021]
Law Commission: Call for evidence on digital assets

The Law Commission has published a call for evidence on digital assets.

The call for evidence aims to give stakeholders and market participants an opportunity to provide their input ahead of the publication of a consultation paper on digital assets, which will make proposals for law reform.

Feedback is requested by 30 July 2021. [4 May 2021]

CMA: Policy paper on DRCF

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has published a policy paper on the Digital Regulation Cooperation Forum (DRCF).

The policy paper sets out how the DRCF will address barriers to regulatory cooperation, and proposes measures to strengthen digital regulatory cooperation. The DRCF suggests that HM Government (HMG) may wish to consider the following measures: supporting appropriate information sharing; embedding coherence and cooperation in the statutory framework for digital services; and providing transparency and accountability. [4 May 2021]






SRB: Speech by Chair at DIW Women's Finance Summit 2021

The Single Resolution Board (SRB) has published a speech by its Chair, Elke König, to the DIW Women's Finance Summit 2021. The speech touched upon:

  • the move towards remote working and digitalisation as a result of Covid-19;
  • the impact of Covid-19 on digital banking;
  • regulatory challenges in the banking sphere; and
  • fintech and innovation. [7 May 2021]


EBA: Consultation on a central AML/CFT database

The European Banking Authority (EBA) has launched a public consultation on draft regulatory technical standards (RTS) on a central database on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) in the EU (and an accompanying impact assessment).

The consultation paper (CP) explains how the EBA will analyse and disseminate the information contained in the AML/CFT central database. The draft RTS within the CP set out: (i) the rules to ensure the effectiveness of the database and the confidentiality of the data, (ii) how the database will interact with other notifications that competent authorities are required to provide to the EBA, and (iii) the provisions to ensure the protection of personal data.

Feedback is requested by 17 June 2021. [6 May 2021]





APRA Deputy Chair speaks to Customer Owned Banking Association CEO & Directors Forum about risk, cyber-attacks and proportionate regulation

The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) has published a speech given by its Deputy Chair, John Lonsdale, to the Customer Owned Banking Association (COBA) 2021 CEO & Directors Forum.

Mr Lonsdale spoke of the crucial role banks and other authorised-deposit taking institutions (ADI) had in supporting Australia’s economic recovery in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. Mr Lonsdale also discussed key risks to the banking sector, with particular focus on cyber-attacks. Mr Lonsdale stated that APRA expects boards to be focused on the risk of cyber-attacks and to take necessary steps to address this exposure.

Acknowledging that APRA’s regulatory requirements could impact smaller entities disproportionately, Mr Lonsdale stated that APRA intends to minimise regulatory burden by taking a proportionate regulatory approach where possible. Mr Lonsdale pointed to APRA’s ongoing consultation on a revised ADI capital framework as an example of APRA implementing this consideration across its policy development activities. [4 May 2021]




MAS launches Global FinTech Hackcelerator for a Greener Financial Sector

MAS has announced the launch of the 6th edition of the Global FinTech Hackcelerator, with the theme “Harnessing Technology to Power Green Finance”. FinTech firms and solution providers are invited to submit innovative solutions to address over 50 problem statements that have been collected from financial institutions and green finance industry players. These problem statements focus on three key challenges:

  • Mobilising Capital;
  • Monitoring Commitment; and
  • Measuring Impact.

Submissions are requested by 11 June 2021. [6 May 2021]





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