FMA Consummates MOUs with New Zealand’s Dispute Resolution Schemes

The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) in New Zealand has signed a number of recent memorandums of understanding (MOU) with several

New Zealand’s Financial Markets Authority (FMA) has signed Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) with the Insurance Savings Ombudsman (ISO) and the Banking Ombudsman Scheme (BOS) respectively, according to an FMA statement.

The NZ regulator has completed a number of MOUs as of late, including one with the Financial Dispute Resolution Scheme (FDRS) and Financial Services Complaints Limited (FSCL) last year.

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Even before the aforementioned development, the FMA and the dispute resolution schemes (DRS) enjoyed a cooperative and symbiotic relationship. In particular, MOUs help foster and establish a comprehensive framework for consultation and cooperation that enables thematic reviews of complaints. These ultimately assist both the FMA and the dispute resolution schemes to achieve their objectives.

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Perhaps more importantly, the DRS provide a cost-effective way for consumers and financial service providers to resolve complaints over retail financial product issues and sales processes.
According to Liam Mason, FMA’s General Counsel in a recent statement on the MOUs, “We’re pleased to get these MOUs in place as this shows our commitment to work together with agencies that can help the FMA discover early warnings of potential harm. Greater coordination between our agencies helps us to better serve the public and raise confidence in financial services, by improving our understanding of thematic or systemic issues.”

“The insights we gain from the DRS help us to regulate in a more preventative and collaborative way and this is a positive step for investors, consumers and the financial markets,” he added.

Late last year, the FMA made waves with its regularity launch of Phase two, which effectively ushered in a new era of capital markets and financial services laws that revamped investor disclosure in the country.

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