Representatives from Australia, Japan, South Korea and New Zealand have recently signed the final Memorandum of Cooperation (Memorandum) setting out the internationally agreed rules and cooperation mechanisms for the Asia Region Funds Passport (Passport).

The Passport, once fully implemented, will be the most far-reaching multilateral regulatory framework in the Asia-Pacific region allowing for the cross-border marketing and distribution of collective investment schemes.

While Australia, Japan, South Korea and New Zealand are the initial signatories to the Memorandum, it is expected that Thailand, Singapore and the Philippines will follow shortly.

The Passport is widely seen as a key building block to increasing financial integration across the Asia-Pacific region and, in particular, to facilitating the flow of capital into the region’s equity and debt markets.

By signing the Memorandum, the signatories (Participants) have set in motion the implementation of the Passport, which is expected to be operational by the end of 2017.

Source: K&L Gates Legal Insight (refer full article here)