By Arra B. Francia, July 8 2019; Business World

Image Credit to Reuters

THE SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION (SEC) has drafted guidelines as part of a regionwide move to allow capital market professionals from Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members to issue research reports outside their home countries.

In a draft memorandum circular posted on its Web site last Friday, the country’s corporate regulator explained that cross-border publication of research reports will help investors gain access to more information on ASEAN capital market products, specifically on equities listed within Southeast Asia.

Under the draft guidelines on the Implementation of Cross-Border Publication of Research Report, salesmen of broker dealers or investment houses, certified investment solicitors, key officers of fund managers, and other professionals authorized by the SEC can issue research reports in other ASEAN countries that signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on this initiative.

These professionals, who must be licensed in their home jurisdictions, must apply for a salesman or certified investment solicitor license with the SEC to release reports under this framework.

Aside from having a license from their home regulator, only those with no pending disciplinary actions or who have not been convicted by a judicial or administrative body are allowed to participate in cross-border publication of reports.

Professionals may issue research reports on shares that have been listed in ASEAN, bonds or sukuk, and units of collective investments scheme such as units of a real estate investment trust and units of infrastructure fund.

Securities that are still under initial public offering are not included among products that can be subjects of such reports.

The release of the draft guidelines is part of the commission’s efforts to support the ASEAN Capital Markets Forum’s initiatives to enhance connectivity of capital market professionals in their member countries.

To recall, the SEC signed in March an MoU on cross-border publication of research reports under the ASEAN Capital Market Professional Mobility Framework. Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand were the other signatories.

The SEC has already issued guidelines for the ACMF pass, which provides for the free movement of investment advisers in the ASEAN.

The commission is inviting all interested parties to submit their comments and inputs on cross-border publication until July 16. — Arra B. Francia