To implement its statutory objectives, the Commission has set up a four-pronged functional structure, which reflects its core activities (policy and research, licensing, surveillance and enforcement) backed up by a structure of support services.
Policy and Research Unit
The main function of the Unit is to research and analyse regulatory developments in the non-bank financial services sector locally and abroad, and to propose amendments to upgrade current practices to international standards. This Unit works towards policy formulation in relation to regulation and supervision.
The Unit also collects and analyses statistical data to capture the main trends of the financial markets and provide critical information to the industry and investors.
The licensing unit is responsible for
- Processing applications for setting up business in the non-bank financial sector and generally for collective investment vehicles, insurance and global businesses, and other financial services such as leasing, asset management, custodial services and the like.
- The licensing process involves vetting firms at entry to allow only firms and individuals who satisfy the necessary criteria of financial soundness, competence, integrity and honesty to engage in any activity pertaining to non-bank financial services.
- We are implementing a new integrated approach to licensing firms, which allows us to be consistent in the way we assess applications for authorization for all financial services under our remit.
As a general rule, firms proposing investment products or financial business activities must be licensed. They have to file in documents describing:
- The company’s properties and business
- The product / services to be offered
- Past track record and profile of the promoters
- Other additional information, which the CODT deems appropriate
- It ensures that all regulated firms and financial intermediaries comply on an ongoing basis with regulatory financial and disclosure requirements, and with all conduct of business regulation.
- It allows the CODT to identify compliance problems and deal with firm specific risks in a quick and informal manner. Deficiencies in compliance are brought to the attention of the licensee and the latter is monitored until compliance is achieved. Serious breaches are referred to the Enforcement Unit.
- It investigates any suspected breach of legal and regulatory requirements.
- It helps CODT maintain stability in the financial system and achieve its consumer protection mandate.
- The Enforcement Unit acts upon recommendations made by the Surveillance Unit to enforce laws relating to the non-bank financial services industry.
- It seeks to report and suppress illegal or improper practices.
- The Unit may make recommendations to the Board of CODT regarding -
- Withdrawal of operating licence.
- Refusal to renew licence.
- Disciplinary action against operators in the financial services sector.
- Enforcement of civil sanctions where the law so empowers it.