The FSC has thus confirmed that it will continue to maintain a flexible approach and will not impose administrative penalties on its licensees for late filings and reporting obligations.
However, the following caveats apply to the application of the FSC’s flexibility:
- the obligations must relate to licensees as follows:
- those whose financial year end is between the period 31 October 2019 to 29 February 2020. Such licensees must file their audited financial statements, financial summary (as defined under the Companies Act 2001) and/or annual reports within 6 months of their balance sheet date;
- those whose financial year end is between the period 31 December 2019 to 31 May 2020. Such licensees must file their annual reports and audited financial statements within 90 days or 3 months of their balance sheet date.
- the quarterly and interim financial statements of licensees for the quarter which ended in the period 29 February 2020 to 30 June 2020 must be filed within 45 days after the end of each quarter;
- licensees must comply with these obligations by 30 September 2020, after which administrative penalties will be levied.
For the avoidance of doubt, the FSC has emphasized that the term licensees captures entities which have been licensed, authorized and registered with the FSC as well as those registered as Reporting Issuers. Furthermore, it has also confirmed that the flexibility will not apply to the filing and reporting obligations which were already due prior to the start of the national lockdown namely, 20 March 2020.
As the regulator of activities of our international financial centre, the FSC has been continuously demonstrating an approach which shows adaptability to global changes especially during the unprecedented times which the COVID-19 pandemic has created and the ‘new normal’ which it has triggered.
Sharvada Bholla-Thodda, Regional Compliance Manager, and Vaishali Damonaiko, Pupil to Sharmilla Bhima, also helped with the preparation of this article.