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Alternative Market Briefing

APEC releases Asia regions funds passport consultation paper

Friday, May 23, 2014

Bailey McCann, Opalesque New York:

The governments of Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Korea, Philippines and Thailand have recently released a public consultation paper on a proposed regulatory arrangement for the cross-border offer of collective investment schemes (CIS) in participating APEC economies, known as the Asia Region Funds Passport (ARFP).

The passport program is a means for participating economies to build cross-border linkages within the Asian region. APEC notes in the paper that a number of similar efforts have gone before, but to limited success.

The passport will be an arrangement under which a CIS operator who operates an eligible CIS in a passport member economy will be able to offer interests in that CIS to investors in other passport member economies subject to the passport arrangements. The paper essentially contains the proposed passport arrangements among the participating countries and asks for public comment.

Attorneys for Herbert, Smith, and Freehills note that the overall passport process is slated to begin in 2016 (presumably under the framework outlined in this paper barring any massive changes during the public comment period). The framework as outlined would be somewhat similar to the European UCITS model.

"It is expected that by facilitating the cross-border distribution of fund produ......................

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