Legal and regulatory review for the life and health insurance sector

29 Mar 2021 – IRD released via an e-mail an AEOI update to the CRS Reportable and Participating Jurisdictions showing additions, with New Caledonia added to Reportable Jurisdictions and Albania, New Caledonia, Nigeria, Peru and Turkey added to Participating Jurisdictions.

29 Mar 2021 – Police Financial Intelligence Unit released the February 2021 Suspicious Activity Report. https://www.police.govt.nz/sites/default/files/publications/fiu-monthly-report-feb2021.pdf

29 Mar 2021 - Protected Disclosures (Protection of Whistleblowers) Bill reported back from Select Committee. https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/bills-and-laws/bills-proposed-laws/document/BILL_99238/protected-disclosures-protection-of-whistleblowers-bill

Financial Markets Conduct (US Futures Commission Merchants) Exemption Notice 2021. The exemption notice temporarily extends exemptions currently in place for US registered futures commission merchants that are accredited NZX derivatives participants with the notice expiring on 3 December 2021. https://www.fma.govt.nz/compliance/exemptions/current-exemption-notices/financial-markets-conduct-act-exemptions/financial-markets-conduct-us-futures-commission-merchants-exemption-notice-2021/

24 Mar 2021 – RBNZ announced that it had made a number of amendment orders to revise the requirements for banks’ published disclosure statements. https://www.rbnz.govt.nz/regulation-and-supervision/banks/consultations-and-policy-initiatives/completed-policy-development/public-disclosure-of-bank-breaches

25 Mar 2021 – FMA updated and closed the consultation on the content of regulatory returns for licensed DI, MIS managers and DIMS providers, including a “response to submissions” document and release of regulatory returns data templates. https://www.fma.govt.nz/compliance/consultation/consultation-paper-content-of-regulatory-returns-for-licensed-di-mis-managers-and-dims-providers/

29 Mar 2021 - NZX gave notice of amendments to the NZX Derivatives Market Rules (Rules) pursuant to Rule 1.6. The amendments to the Rules were approved by the Financial Markets Authority on 15 February 2021, following consultation with the market in April 2020. These amendments involve updates to bring the Rules in conformance with the 2019 amendments to the NZX Participant Rules. https://www.nzx.com/announcements/369841

29 Mar 2021 – RBNZ advised that it had submitted a response to the Climate Change Commission’s Climate Action for Aotearoa consultation. https://www.rbnz.govt.nz/news/2021/03/reserve-bank-responds-to-call-for-climate-change-consultation


Legal and regulatory review for the life and health insurance sector

19 Mar 2021 – FMA media release advised that James Greig, FMA Director Supervision, will lead monitoring and supervision of financial advice. https://www.fma.govt.nz/news-and-resources/media-releases/james-greig-fma-director-supervision-to-lead-monitoring-and-supervision-of-financial-advice/

19 Mar 2021 – AML/CFT - Department of Internal Affairs release advising that, as of 15 March, Financial Service Providers (FSPs) registering or updating their annual report details on the FSPR are required to declare if they are captured under the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act (AML/CFT Act) as a reporting entity and who they are supervised by. The type(s) of financial services registered for as an FSP, and what activities offered in the ordinary course of business will determine if an FSP is a reporting entity. https://www.dia.govt.nz/AML-CFT-New-FSPR-registration-and-reporting-requirement

 18 Mar 2021 – Select Committee submission closing date advised to be 30 Apr 2021 for the Commerce Amendment Bill that underwent first Parliamentary reading on 16 March. https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/bills-and-laws/bills-proposed-laws/document/BILL_108304/commerce-amendment-bill


Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

16 Mar 2021 – Commerce Amendment Bill underwent First Reading and referred to the Economic Development, Science and innovation Select Committee, with report back due by 16 Sept 2021. The Financial Markets Infrastructure Bill completed Second Reading. Relevant weblinks are https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/bills-and-laws/bills-proposed-laws/document/BILL_108304/commerce-amendment-bill and https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/bills-and-laws/bills-proposed-laws/document/BILL_93550/financial-market-infrastructures-bill

17 Mar 2021 – Incorporated Societies Bill introduced into Parliament. The purpose of the bill is to put in place a modern framework of basic legal, governance, and accountability obligations for incorporated societies and those who run them. https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/bills-and-laws/bills-proposed-laws/document/BILL_109429/incorporated-societies-bill

16 Mar 2021 - The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) has released its private health insurance risk equalisation statistics publication for the 2019/20 financial year. https://www.apra.gov.au/private-health-insurance-risk-equalisation-statistics


Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

10 Mar 2021 – Commerce Amendment Bill introduced into Parliament. The Bill amends the Commerce Act to strengthen the prohibition against misuse of market power and make other changes to improve the functioning of the Act. https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/bills-and-laws/bills-proposed-laws/document/BILL_108304/commerce-amendment-bill


Legal and regulatory review for the health and life insurance sector

1 Feb 2021 – Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Hon David Clark, December 2020 diary released with the following potential financial services sector related meetings noted:

  • 2 Dec 2020 – Announcement of clearer lending rules (Attendees not listed)
  • 2 Dec 2020 – Meeting with NZ Bankers Assn (Chief Executive, Government Relations Director, Policy Director, of NZBA)
  • 4 Dec 2020 – Attendance at NZBA end of year luncheon
  • 9 Dec 2020 - Meeting with Commission for Financial Capability (Retirement Commissioner)
  • 10 Dec 2020 – Announcement about Merchant Service Fees (Attendees listed as “stakeholders”)
  • 10 Dec 2020 – Meeting with Financial Markets Authority (Chair, Chief Executive, Director Strategy, of the FMA)
  • 14 Dec 2020 – Meeting with Citizens Advice Bureau (Chief Executive of CAB)
  • 15 Dec 2020 – Meeting with Financial Services Federation (Executive Director, Board Members of FSF)

https://www.beehive.govt.nz/sites/default/files/2021-01/Hon%20Dr%20David%20Clark%20Proactive%20Diary%20Release%20December%202020.pdf


Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

23 Dec 2020 - The Commerce Commission released its updated Authorisation Guidelines that explain its approach to assessing applications to authorise agreements or mergers in the public interest. https://comcom.govt.nz/news-and-media/media-releases/2020/commission-publishes-revised-authorisation-guidelines-and-application-forms

23 Dec 2020 – The Open Government Partnership released Progress reports for Third National Action Plan and Meeting Papers. https://ogp.org.nz/latest-news/progress-reports-for-third-national-action-plan-and-meeting-papers/

22 Dec 2020 – Courtesy of Dentons Kensington Swan, note the release of the following regulations and other information during this month, in addition to those items included in the FMA update or the MBIE release on 17 Dec 2020:

  • Financial Markets Conduct (Fees) Amendment Regulations 2020
  • Financial Markets (Derivatives Margin and Benchmarking) Reform Amendment Act Commencement Order 2020
  • Financial Markets Conduct (Licensing of Administrators of Financial Benchmarks) Amendment Regulations 2020
  • Financial Markets Conduct (Overseas Providers of Custodial Services – Assurance Engagement) Exemption Notice 2020
  • Financial Markets Conduct (Australian Licensees) Exemption Notice 2020

22 Dec 2020 – Courtesy of Dentons Kensington Swan, note the submission opportunities closing at the start of 2021 as follows:

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment:

  • Updating the Responsible Lending Code – submissions close 15 January 2021, 5pm.
  • Regulating to reduce merchant service fees – submissions close 19 February 2021, 10am.

Reserve Bank of New Zealand:

  • Review of the Insurance (Prudential Supervision) Act 2010 (scope of the Act and treatment of overseas insurers) – submissions close 18 February 2021.
  • Review of the Insurance Solvency Standards – submissions close 18 February 2021.
  • Reinstating Loan-to-Value Ratio restrictions – submissions close 22 January 2021.

Financial Markets Authority:

  • Proposed guidance on advertising offers – submissions close 16 February 2021.

Parliament:

  • Reserve Bank of New Zealand Bill – submissions close 4 February 2021.

Update to reference standards for Financial Advice Providers

Following the release today by the FMA of the final Classes and standard licence conditions for Financial Advice Providers, we have updated our pack of 'reference standards' for a licensed FAP. This document brings together in a single handy reference a summary of the different laws, regulations, and guidance, applicable to operating a Financial Advice Provider. Clients using us for governance, risk, and compliance work will receive a copy of the updated reference standards guide. Contact us if you would like to receive one. 

The main change at this point is the replacement of the consultation material on classes and standard conditions for a FAP licence with material extracted from the two new FMA documents covering:

  • Classes of licence
  • Final standard conditions for a FAP licence

The reference standards document is still incomplete and will remain incomplete until the FMA releases two outstanding documents as follows:

  • FMA License Guide for Financial Advice Providers (expected this month)
  • Annual Regulatory Reporting Requirements (still to be consulted upon next year)

Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

16 Sept 2020 – Treasury published the pre-election economic and fiscal update. https://www.treasury.govt.nz/news-and-events/news/2020-pre-election-economic-and-fiscal-update-published-today

16 Sept 2020 - MBIE released a statement that the Government planned responding to the retirement income policy review this year, but is taking further time to consider New Zealand’s retirement settings in light of the impacts of COVID-19. https://www.mbie.govt.nz/about/news/update-on-government-response-to-retirement-income-policy-review/

17 Sept 2020 – Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Hon Kris Faafoi, released a statement that the  Government is working on how New Zealand’s retirement income policies and settings can best support Kiwis in light of the COVID-19 economic recovery, with the help of the Retirement Commissioner’s latest review. https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/economic-recovery-guides-govt-response-retirement-income-policy-review


Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

4 Sept 2020 – The FMA released a consultation paper on the proposed Auditor Regulation Act (Prescribed Minimum Standards and Conditions for Licensed Auditors and Registered Audit Firms) Notice 2020, intended to replace two previous notices proposed to be revoked. Submissions close on 21 Sept 2020. https://www.fma.govt.nz/compliance/consultation/consultation-prescribed-min-standards-conditions-licensed-auditors-registered-audit-firms/

2 Sept 2020 – FMA issued a warning that it is aware of a case where scammers have been impersonating the FMA while operating a scam relating to money remittance services. https://www.fma.govt.nz/news-and-resources/warnings-and-alerts/fma-impersonated-in-suspected-money-remittance-scam/

3 Sept 2020 – Deloitte issued a paper commissioned by Partners Life exploring observations made in the RBNZ Bulletin, which provided commentary around the profitability of New Zealand’s life insurers, the value for money of life insurance, and life insurers’ ability to meet minimum capital requirements.

https://www2.deloitte.com/nz/en/pages/financial-services/articles/deloitte-issues-paper-life-insurance-sector.html#

3 Sept 2020 – The Commerce Commission announced that it has signed a multilateral framework enhancing international cooperation on competition enforcement with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, the Competition Bureau of the Government of Canada, the United Kingdom Competition and Markets Authority, the United States Department of Justice and the United States Federal Trade Commission.

https://comcom.govt.nz/news-and-media/media-releases/2020/commerce-commission-signs-multilateral-framework-enhancing-international-cooperation-on-competition-enforcement

3 Sept 2020 – FMA update released which included the following new material:

  • The release of three short videos for consumers about getting financial advice featuring Investor Capability Manager Gillian Boyes together with a related Spinoff article. Related weblinks at
  • World Investor Week 2020, starting Monday, 5 October.

Related weblinks at https://www.fma.govt.nz/investors/getting-financial-advice/ and https://thespinoff.co.nz/money/12-08-2020/everything-youve-always-wanted-to-know-about-financial-advisers/


Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

31 Aug 2020 – Government released its response to the EQC inquiry. https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/government-response-eqc-inquiry-released

31 Aug 2020 – MBIE advised that the Fair Trading Amendment Bill was discharged from the Economic Development, Science and Innovation Committee (the Committee) on 12 August without a report from the Committee. This means that the Bill as introduced will move onto the second reading stage. MBIE expect the second reading to take place after the election. Submissions and MBIE’s advice to the Committee are available at https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/bills-and-laws/bills-proposed-laws/document/BILL_93552/tab/submissionsandadvice