The International Financial Services Commission (IFSC) in Belize has issued a warning to the public against two separate financial firms operating illegally in the country, MT Capital Partners LTD and FXPrivate Company LTD, according to an IFSC statement.
The IFSC is Belize’s leading financial services regulator, helping police the country against illicit and fraudulent operations. According to the company representatives, MT Capital Partners LTD, a former international business company, has been operating illegally in Belize and has never been licensed under the IFSC, contrary to claims made by the group. This has not stopped the provider from engaging in foreign exchange (FX) advisory services for clients, soliciting clients in Belize without proper authorization.
MT Capital Partners LTD was formally dissolved last month on January 13, 2016 and no longer appears on Belize’s International Business Companies Register, with the regulator issuing a cease and desist order against the group for its FX services.
Alternatively, another financial services provider, FXPrivate Company LTD, has picked up a cease and desist order from the IFSC, for its unregulated offering of FX activities in Belize. Like the aforementioned MT Capital Partners, FXPrivate Company has also been operating without the requisite license from the IFSC, which has drawn the attention of the regulator for its illegal operations.
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FXPrivate Company had been removed from the International Business Companies Register of Belize back on January 1, 2016. Consequently, all individuals are advised to avoid engaging in any activities offered from the group.
IFSC Ushers in Regulatory Changes
In a parallel announcement, the IFSC has also introduced a number of new provisions to its regulatory framework. This includes several new fees across its application and licensing framework.
More specifically, the IFSC application fee has been hiked from to $1000, up from $500. In addition, the applicable fee must also accompany a new application and cannot be refunded. This wasn’t the only change as the annual license fee charged by the regulator has now increased to $25,000 from $5,000.
Finally, for trading in FX, commodity-based derivative instruments, and other securities, the minimum capital requirements have collectively grown to $500,000 from $100,000 previously. To help companies adjust and cope with these new fees and requirements, the IFSC has allowed a transitional period for existing companies to enforce the new compliance measures. That being said, the announced changes are slated to come into force on the on April 1, 2016, just two months from now.