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ASIC continues global fintech push, signs agreement with China



The agreement opens a doorway for Australia to China's massive fintech opportunity.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has announced its latest international agreement, this time with fintech heavyweight China. The China Securities and Regulatory Commission (CRSC) has entered into an agreement with Australia's credit regulator, with both aiming to "promote innovation in financial services in their respective markets".

ASIC's announcement notes the huge opportunity this agreement represents, giving us a clear way through to China as it stands as a fintech powerhouse. Total investment in Chinese fintech ventures was estimated to be US$10 billion (approx. AU$13 billion) in 2016. Digital payments transacted in China make up almost half of the total global volume.

"Co-operation between regulators is essential to realise the benefits of the technological revolution," said ASIC chairman Greg Medcraft. "This Agreement represents an exciting opportunity for us to learn more about the Chinese fintech sector, which is renowned for its success and dynamism. We also look forward to sharing our insights and experiences on regtech with the CSRC."

The agreement, which provides a framework for the two regulators to share market trends and developments as well as regulatory developments, is far from being the first of its kind for ASIC.

The regulator has made several "fintech referral and information-sharing" agreements with regulatory bodies across Asia including Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan and Malaysia along with regulatory bodies in the UK, Ontario, Abu Dhabi and Switzerland.

It has made other similar agreements, such as "information-sharing agreements" with regulatory bodies in Kenya and Indonesia and memorandums of understanding with New Zealand.

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