News & Insights

Hong Kong SFC licensing and compliance hints – November 2022

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Authored by: Connie Chan

Can I be exempted from re-taking HKSI licensing exams if I was previously licensed with the SFC between three to eight years ago?

An exemption from re-taking the HKSI licensing exams is available for individuals seeking to re-enter the industry, provided the following conditions can be met: (i) they were last licensed with the SFC between three to eight years ago; and (ii) they are re-applying for a licence with the same competency requirements and in the same role as when they were previously licensed. In such circumstances an individual may apply for a conditional exemption from the regulatory framework paper requirements (e.g. HKSI licensing exam paper 1) in reliance upon the re-entrant exemption under section of 4.4.4 of the Guidelines on Competence. To be eligible for the exemption, an individual needs to complete five CPT hours per regulated activity applied for, per year of absence (any fraction of a year needs to be rounded up). Training in local regulatory knowledge needs to make up at least 50% of the CPT activities before the submission of the application. Furthermore, a confirmation of the completion of the required CPT hours needs to be provided to the SFC, and supporting records which evidence the completion of the required CPT hours need to be kept.

As an example, if you were licensed with the SFC four years ago and now want to apply to be a representative for types 1, 4 and 9 regulated activities, you would need to complete 60 CPT hours in total before submitting an application to be relicensed with the SFC. This may sound quite challenging, but if it can be demonstrated that particular courses that you took are equally relevant to the various types of regulated activities which you are applying for, the same courses may be counted towards the required CPT hours for the respective regulated activities. You need to be prepared to provide a description of the courses and explain how these courses (including the courses related to Hong Kong regulatory knowledge) are relevant to the different types of regulated activities for which a licence is being sought.

CPT obligations

As we are approaching the end of this CPT year, all licensed individuals should ensure they will be able to fulfil their 2022 CPT requirements. If your company has licensed individuals who still need CPT hours, you need to remind them to do so over the coming weeks. From 2022 onwards, licensed representatives are required to take a minimum of 10 CPT hours while responsible officers are required to undertake at least 12 CPT hours (both regardless of the types of regulated activities they engage in). Out of the required hours, all licensed individuals are required to obtain at least five CPT hours on topics directly relevant to the regulated activities for which they are licensed, and two CPT hours on topics relating to ethics or compliance. In addition, responsible officers will also need to attend two CPT hours on topics relating to regulatory compliance. Please contact us if you require any assistance with meeting your CPT obligations.

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