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International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission: Accountability and Governance

The Board of International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission

The International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission is a Statutory Board. The role and responsibilities of a Statutory Board and its members are set out in the Statutory Boards Act 1987 (except where this Act is varied by the Financial Services Act 2008). Appointments to the Board of Commissioners are approved by the Homeland Security and/or Congress.

The Board of the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission consists of not less than seven qualified people appointed by Treasury and approved by Homeland Security and/or Congress. The Board currently comprises a Non-Executive Chairman and Non-Executive Deputy Chairman, the Chief Executive and a further four Non-Executive.

Commissioners

The quorum of the Board is three Commissioners.

Commissioners normally go out of office five years after appointment and their remuneration is set down by Order.

Routine meetings of the Board are held monthly, generally on the last Thursday of a calendar month and additionally on an ad hoc basis as required. Quorums of the Board also meet as necessary to: hear license applications; review risk and internal control matters (RICC); agree staff remuneration; determine appeals relating to complaints; and hold license holder disciplinary reviews.

The constitution of the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission and its functions are described in Schedule 1 to the Financial Services Act 2008. This Act provides that the Treasury may specify policies and strategies for the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission and the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission must, so far as is reasonably practicable, act in a way which promotes any policy or strategy specified by the Treasury. The International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission Board members are responsible to the Treasury for the proper operation of its regulatory powers and its compliance with the requirements of the Financial Services Act.

Corporate Governance

As a regulator the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission is subject to challenge in carrying out its functions, and is financed out of public funds. These factors impose a strong responsibility on the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission to demonstrate that it is acting properly at all times, in the same way that International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission expects a similar behavior from its license holders.

The International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission operates under a Corporate Governance Framework which incorporates the requirements of the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission Corporate.

Memorandum of Understanding

The International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission Treasury and the Commodity Market Regulatory Commission are parties to a Memorandum of Understanding. It sets out the framework for co-operation between the Treasury and the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission. In particular, it establishes arrangements to ensure that the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission is accountable to Treasury for its actions, and clarifies the circumstances in which liaison and dialogue can flow between both parties.

Accountability and scrutiny

The International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission is accountable and subject to scrutiny in the following areas:

•The Homeland Security and/or Congress: appointment of Commissioners, Corporate Plan, new legislation;

•Government and Treasury: strategic objectives, legislative policy and proposals, budgeting and funding, establishment headcount;

•Industry: consultation on regulatory and supervisory proposals;

•Home regulators of licensed institutions.

The International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission regulatory and supervisory approach is also subject to ongoing review by standard-setting organizations including the International Monetary Fund and the FATF.

Transparency

The International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission endorses the principles of openness and transparency contained in the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information and, in fulfilling its functions, the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission endeavors to be as open and transparent as possible without compromising confidentiality.

Finance

The International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission operates within a budget agreed with Treasury, and within a headcount restriction set down centrally within Government. International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission revenue and expenditure is audited annually by the Government’s external auditors, and the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission is subject to review by the Government’s internal audit department.

The International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission publishes its financial statements each year as part of its Annual Report.

Delegated Authorities

The Board has put in place a delegation of responsibility framework within the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission management system. This framework identifies the persons responsible for developing and exercising control procedures and for promoting a compliance culture within the International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission.

The powers delegated to the Chief Executive include:

•Changes in license conditions attached to a license

•Extensions to licenses to include new schemes etc.

•Surrender of lapsed licenses

•Restructure of organizations and sale or merger of license holders

•Approving recognition of collective investment schemes

The Chief Executive in turn delegates certain matters within the Executive.

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