BVI Financial Services Commission recognises overseas stock and commodities exchanges

The BVI Financial Services Commission (FSC) has issued the Regulatory Code (Recognised Exchanges) Notice 2015 (the Notice) under powers set out in the Regulatory Code 2009 (the Code). The Notice is effective as of 15 January 2016. The “recognised exchanges” referred to include some of the most important stock and commodity exchanges in the world, a full list is set out at the end of this note. 

Why is the Notice relevant?

In very general terms, companies listed on recognised exchanges are entitled to benefit from light-touch KYC and customer due diligence processes when dealing with or being serviced by BVI regulated credit or financial institutions.  

More specifically, and conversely, BVI regulated credit or financial institutions (technically “relevant persons” as defined in the Anti-Money Laundering Regulations 2008) may rely on savings in BVI anti-money laundering legislation, principally the 2008 Regulations and the BVI Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Code of Practice, 2008 to avoid having to undertake Know-Your-Client checks on the beneficial owners of a company listed on a recognised stock exchange. In this way the introduction of the recognised list should be seen positively as a way of lessening the administrative burden of the client on-boarding process in the BVI.

What is a recognised exchange?

Under the Code, a “recognised exchange” is an exchange that is a member of the World Federation of Exchanges website or an exchange that is expressly recognised by the FSC by notice published in the BVI Gazette. 

List of recognised exchanges in the Notice

  • American Stock Exchange
  • Australian Stock Exchange
  • Bourse de Montreal Inc. 
  • Cayman Islands Stock Exchange
  • Channel Islands Stock Exchange
  • Chicago Board of Trade
  • Chicago Stock Exchange
  • Coffee, Sugar and Cocoa Exchange Inc. 
  • ICE Futures Europe
  • ICE Futures U.S. Inc. 
  • ICAP Securities & Derivatives Exchange Limited
  • International Capital Market Association
  • Kansas City Board of Trade
  • LIFFE Administration and Management
  • London Stock Exchange Plc
  • MidAmerica Commodity Exchange
  • Minneapolis Grain Exchange
  • New York Cotton Exchange
  • New York Futures Exchange
  • New York Mercantile Exchange Inc
  • New York Stock Exchange
  • New Zealand Stock Exchange
  • Osaka Securities Exchange
  • Pacific Exchange
  • Philadelphia Stock Exchange
  • South African Futures Exchange
  • The London Metal Exchange Limited
  • Tokyo International Financial Futures Exchange
  • Tokyo Stock Exchange
  • Toronto Stock Exchange