Financial Services Tax News Flash

Dec 2016

Switzerland and Hong Kong mutual recognition of funds

On 2 December 2016, Hong Kong's Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) and the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the Switzerland Hong Kong Mutual Recognition of Funds and Asset Managers (the MRF). The MRF allows eligible Swiss and Hong Kong public funds to be distributed in each other's jurisdiction, opening the Swiss and Hong Kong retail markets to international asset managers and increasing the avenues for investment and range of asset classes. The MRF also streamlines the vetting process of public funds in Switzerland and Hong Kong, creating ample opportunities for asset management companies and investors. The signing of the Memorandum again demonstrates the steps the Hong Kong government is taking to expand the access to foreign funds to a growing population of investors. In the bid to further promote Hong Kong as a premier international asset management centre and fund hub, it is particularly refreshing to see Hong Kong entering into mutually beneficial regimes and taking on a more reciprocal approach versus focussing on being a distribution centre.