Russia’s largest forex broker, Alpari, decided to withdraw its license application in Malta and is pursuing different options. In a statement to online media Finance Magnates, the company said it is still committed to establishing a European STP regulated unit.
In fact, Alpari had a UK-regulated branch, however it went insolvent in January 2015 after the Swiss franc shock, which caused extreme lack of liquidity. The company has pretty solid reputation in Europe (and especially in Eastern Europe) and a number of regulation options in the EU, so it is considering licensing in member states, other than Malta.
“Alpari is willing to pursue its new license in Europe giving all possible comfort to the European regulators to carry on their duties unpressured, while at the same time safeguarding its right to choose what it considers to be its best option. As a result, we have decided to withdraw our license application in Malta and we are actually pursuing different options,” commented Roberto d’Ambrosio, CEO of Alpari Research & Analysis Limited.
The licensing process of forex brokers in general and in Europe in particular, has indeed become very strict. The single regulator for financial services in Malta is the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA). In order to acquire a license from MSFA, financial services providers must: hold net tangible assets amounting to at least €730,000 and this minimum capital requirement should be satisfied on an ongoing basis; they are required to have local presence, to put in place adequate internal controls for their everyday operations, to maintain a risk management system, and regularly report to MFSA, among other requirements.
Alpari is interested in enhancing its global presence. In June, the company`s unit in Belarus got entered into the register of the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus (NBRB) as an authorized forex broker. However, its application for forex license in Russia was rejected by the country’s central bank.
Set up in 1998, Alpari is the leading forex broker in Russia, even though it still does not have a license from the regulator Bank of Russia, as required by law that came into effect on January 1, 2016. Headquartered in Russia, Alpari operates through its units in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG), Mauritius, and the UAE and Belarus.