Under the framework, fund managers based in Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand can now offer CIS constituted funds in their home jurisdiction directly to retail investors in the other two ASEAN countries under a streamlined authorisation process.
“Retail investors in ASEAN will benefit from an increase in the choice of funds for investment with the launch of the ASEAN CIS framework,” said Lee Boon Ngiap, assistant managing director, capital markets, MAS.
Fund managers will also benefit through increased business opportunities across the three geographies.
Ngiap said he expects more ASEAN jurisdictions to join the framework in the next few years.
Ranjit Ajit Singh, chairman of the Securities Commission Malaysia, added: “ASEAN has one of the highest savings rates in the world which can be re-invested in the region to generate returns and contribute to the region’s future growth prospects.”
“Under this initiative, investors and fund managers can benefit and leverage off one of the most dynamic regions of the world, with a combined GDP in excess of $2.4trn.”
The countries have drafted a handbook for CIS operators that includes details for fund managers on application procedures, the use of local distributors in the offering process, and the procedures for remittance of funds in each country.
Passports catching on in Asia
More passport initiatives are coming. The Asia Region Funds Passport (ARFP) which has been so far joined by Singapore, Australia, Korea, New Zealand, the Philippines and Thailand is in the works.
Moreover, authorities in Hong Kong and China are working on mutual recognition of funds.