Temporary Arrangements Regarding Financial Markets Regulatory Practices (FMRP) Examination in view of COVID-19 Pandemic

Dealers/brokers who engage in wholesale dealing of over-the-counter foreign exchange, money market instruments and derivative products are expected to pass the FMRP Examination within 6 months after joining a Market Participant. In view of the COVID-19 situation, the IBF (Institute of Banking and Finance) has suspended the administration of all examinations at its premises since 9 April 2020. 

To minimise business disruptions, SFEMC, in consultation with MAS, will grant dealers/brokers who are affected by the suspension of examination a longer window to fulfil the FMRP examination requirement.

IBF will re-commence FMRP examinations on 12 August 2020.  Any individual who is appointed as a dealer/trader between 9 October 2019 and 31 July 2020, both dates inclusive, will be given an extended period of up to 12 months from their date of appointment or until 31 January 2021, whichever is sooner, to pass the FMRP examination (“temporary relief measure”). Please see illustration below:

Date of appointmentOriginal deadline to pass the FMRP examinationExtended deadline to pass the FMRP examination
9 October 20198 April 20208 October 2020
1 November 201930 April 202031 October 2020
1 April 202030 September 202031 January 2021
1 May 202031 October 202031 January 2021
31 July 202031 January 202131 January 2021

Financial Institutions should monitor the completion of FMRP examination of their dealers/traders. Upon expiry of the extended deadline, the dealer/trader will be required to cease the conduct of regulated activities for which he/she has not passed the FMRP examination. 

Financial Institutions will still have to perform proper due diligence to ensure that a dealer/trader fulfils all other minimum entry requirements, the Financial Institutions’ internal recruitment criteria and are fit and proper to be appointed as dealer/trader.

In the event that the FMRP examination is again suspended due to the COVID-19 situation, the deadline to pass the examination may be further extended.

Temporary Arrangements regarding Client Advisory Competency Standards in view of COVID-19 pandemic

(21 April 2020) In view of the COVID-19 pandemic, the IBF has suspended the administration of all examinations at its premises from 9 April 2020. This development, coupled with the various COVID-19 measures imposed locally and overseas, has hampered the ability of Covered Persons to pass the CACS exams in a timely manner. 

To minimise business disruptions, PBIG, in consultation with MAS, will provide flexibility for Covered Entitles to allow Covered Persons to provide financial/wealth advisory services to clients on behalf of his/her Covered Entity, pending fulfilment of the CACS requirements under para 2.1.1 of the Private Banking Code of Conduct, subject to safeguards. A Covered Person will be given a 6-month grace period from his date of appointment to pass the relevant CACS exams. For instance, an individual who is appointed as a Covered Person on 1 May 2020 (save for passing CACS exams) will have a 6 month grace period to pass his CACS exams (i.e. the Covered Person will only be required to complete the CACS exams by 31 October 2020).

Except for the CACS requirements, Covered Entities will still have to perform proper due diligence to ensure that the Covered Persons fulfil all other minimum entry requirements, the FIs’ internal recruitment criteria, and are fit and proper to be appointed as Covered Persons.

Temporary Arrangements regarding Capital Markets and Financial Advisory Services (CFMAS) Examinations in view of COVID-19 pandemic

(8 April 2020) In view of the COVID-19 situation, the Institute of Banking and Finance (IBF) and the Singapore College of Insurance (SCI) will be suspending the CMFAS exams from 9 April 2020 to 4 May 2020 (dates inclusive). This, together with other measures imposed locally and overseas (e.g. border controls, safe distancing), have impacted the ability of individuals to take the CMFAS exams in a timely manner. To minimise business disruptions, MAS will allow individuals to be appointed representatives and commence regulated activities, before fulfilling the CMFAS exam requirements, subject to safeguards. 

An appointed representative will be given a 6-month grace period from his date of appointment to pass the relevant CMFAS exams (“temporary relief measure”). For instance, an individual who is appointed as a representative for a regulated activity on 1 May 2020 (save for passing CMFAS exams) will have a 6 month grace period to fulfil his CMFAS exam requirements (i.e. he will only be required to complete the relevant CMFAS exams for that regulated activity by 31 October 2020).

Except for the CMFAS exam requirement, FIs will still have to perform proper due diligence to ensure that the representatives fulfil all other minimum entry requirements, the FIs’ internal recruitment criteria, and are fit and proper to be appointed representatives. MAS will review the temporary relief measure, taking into consideration the evolving situation.