Germany’s financial regulator, the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin), has taken further steps to assist financial companies that seek to transfer their operations in the country. The watchdog has launched web page on its website with relevant information about the practices required for acquiring a license in Germany.
“Although the backdrop for this is Brexit, the United Kingdom’s planned departure from the European Union, the welcome page is nonetheless aimed at all foreign companies wishing to conduct operations requiring supervision in Germany or considering moving their registered office here,” the BaFin said in a statement on its website.
Most of the available information is accessible in both English and German. Documents which BaFin requires for deciding on applications are also accepted in English, with the exception of document that require the use of German as a statutory requirement. The database of materials in English will further be expanded.
In addition making information more accessible to foreign businesses, BaFin has also affirmed it will simplify and accelerate approval procedures wherever possible. It will draw on assessments by other supervisory authorities within Europe and use them as the basis for issuing temporary provisional authorizations.
Changes have also been implemented in the communication procedures. Foreign companies can conduct all communication with BaFin in English. They can sent enquiries via email or use a special form available on the regulator’s website.
Many financial companies licensed in the UK, including forex brokers, are expected to fleet from the country after it decided in mid-2016 to exit the European Union (EU|) and it is not certain whether it would retain single market passporting rights. A license issued by UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) currently provides admission to all countries in the European Economic Area (EEA), but soon FCA license holders will lose access to these markets.
The UK is the world’s largest forex hub, accounting for some 37% of the world’s forex trading volumes and a potential change in EU passporting would affect a number of market participants.
Germany announced last month it was preparing to accept UK financial entities. Aside from it, other countries, including France, Ireland and Spain have also showed interest in taking over FCA-licensees seeking authorization under an alternative jurisdiction.