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NZ fund managers, trustees face new rules: Power

NZ fund managers and trustees face new rules and greater enforcement, Power says

Feb. 18 (BusinessWire) - New rules and greater enforcement of the duties of fund managers and their supervising trustees is on the way, Commerce Minister Simon Power says in releasing the government's response to the recommendations of the Capital Markets Development Taskforce.

It will also seriously consider merging the regulatory oversight roles of the Securities Commission, the Companies Office, and the NZX Disciplinary Tribunal into a new market conduct regulator.

NZX chief executive Mark Weldon signalled support for that approach last year. Also of clear interest to NZX is the government's explicit commitment to "supporting the development of derivatives markets in commodities and energy".

NZX is launching a global dairy derivative this year, and is in a race with its Australian counterpart, ASX, to provide the market platform and clearing system for the energy derivatives that will emerge following electricity sector reforms this year.

Other recommendations of the taskforce, led by merchant banker Rob Cameron, that the government is committed to implementing are:
• Making it easier and cheaper for companies to raise capital privately by clarifying and broadening the exemptions to the Securities Act and Takeovers Act;
• Introducing plain English into investment statements and prospectuses, with warnings on risky or complex products;
• A more co-ordinated approach to the Government’s role in improving the financial literacy of New Zealanders.

Many of the issues will be covered in the review of the Securities Act, a discussion document will be issued in April, with potential changes implemented by October 2011.

The full set of recommendations is available on the Ministry of Economic Development website, www.med.govt.nz.

(BusinessWire)

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