Posted inRegulation

Japan woos foreign firms with new entry office

Foreign AM firms entering Japan will be allowed to complete the registration process in English. Separately, the country has also been courting global asset managers established in Hong Kong.

Japan is creating an office to make it easier for foreign asset management firms to set up in the country, according to an announcement made by Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) last week.

The FSA and local finance bureaus (LFBs) will establish the “financial market entry office” to handle pre-application consultation, registration and supervision for newly entering asset managers.

The agency expects the office to be established in January next year.

Promotion of English

Previously, the FSA only had the “financial market entry consultation desk”. Established in 2017, the desk’s job was to give advice on Japan’s financial regulations to foreign financial firms that have plans of establishing a business in the country.

The new market entry office will inherit the functions of the desk and will serve as a single point of contact for pre-application consultation, registration and supervision, according to FSA. In addition, all the communications and registration documents will be available in English.

To achieve that, the FSA launched a public consultation to partially amend relevant regulations to accept documents in English.

“While the application documents for registration in English under the new regime will be accepted after the effective date of the amended regulations, pre-application consultation is available in English from today onward,” the FSA noted.

The agency has already provided a list of documents that can be prepared in English.

Communications with the entry office will also be available online, such as video conferences, the FSA added.

Making Japan more global

The move is part of the country’s initiatives to promote Japan’s financial market and to attract more foreign financial business operators and professionals to set up shop in Japan.

Quoting Japan Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s first policy speech in October, the FSA said that the Japanese government will pursue a range of initiatives to make the country a global financial centre in Asia and globally.

“Strengthening Japan’s functions as a global financial centre will help make global financial markets more resilient against crises such as natural disasters, through geographical diversification of financial centres. Also, that will help create new employment and business opportunities, as well as economic growth, in Japan,” the agency said.

Japan has made moves to attract foreign businesses to set up in the country. Last year, for example, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government (TMG) established a business consultation centre in Hong Kong, according to a TMG statement.

“Hong Kong is an international financial and economic metropolis in Asia that has a high concentration of foreign firms, which is why TMG has chosen to establish its first “Business Development Centre Tokyo” (BDCT) consultation there,” TMG said.

The BDCT is a project that was launched in 2012, which provides foreign companies with business support services. In 2017, additional services were included to ensure that international financial firms can receive high-quality information about doing business in Tokyo.

Last week, the TMG also held an online seminar in Hong Kong, targeting fintech and asset management businesses in the SAR.

Part of the Mark Allen Group.