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ISLAMABAD: The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has issued a new procedure for centralized digital on-boarding of customers of securities brokers, assets management companies and other regulated intermediaries.

In this regard, the SECP has issued a circular number 6 of 2023 here on Friday.

According to the SECP, the said procedure would be applicable on specified SECP regulated entities, i.e., securities brokers, futures brokers, asset management companies, insurance companies and their distribution agents, securities and futures advisors and investment advisors (regulated intermediaries) for digital on-boarding of their customers.

In order to facilitate a uniform process for on-boarding of customers, the SECP, hereby allowed the Central Depository Company of Pakistan Limited (CDC) to provide a Centralized Gateway Portal (CGP) for on-boarding of individual resident customers by the specified SECP regulated intermediaries. The CDC, Pakistan Stock Exchange Limited (PSX) and National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited (NCCPL) shall issue a joint procedure which shall be followed by all specified regulated intermediaries.

The specified regulated intermediaries shall establish their connectivity with the CGP and integrate their online account opening portals.

The specified regulated intermediaries shall share and regularly update the information and documents of individual resident customers with the CGP in accordance with the joint procedures, subject to the prior consent of respective customer, irrespective of whether the account has been opened through the CGP or through other means.

The CGP may share/ update customers’ information and documents with other market intermediaries, in accordance with joint procedure subject to the consent of the customers.

The SECP has specified the simplified and standardized information for on-boarding Pakistani resident individual customers of specified regulated intermediaries through the CGP or through other means, SECP added.

The specified regulated intermediaries shall ensure compliance with all provisions of AML Act, 2010 and rules, regulations and directives, etc., issued there under including SECP (AML/ CFT) Regulations, 2020 from time to time.

In order to improve efficiency in opening of account of resident individual customers all specified regulated intermediaries shall review the application and respond back within a maximum turnaround time (TAT) of three working days to either accept the application or to reject or convey discrepancy in the application form/ information/ documents.

The Circular No. 26 of 2021 issued under section 282B of the Companies Ordinance, 1984, shall stand modified in case of individual resident customers for opening online/ digital accounts either directly with AMCs or through any digital distribution platforms. The requirements stipulated in Circular No. 32 of 2021 shall remain the same.

The specified regulated intermediaries shall align their account opening forms and integrate/ establish connectivity of their online account opening portals with CGP in compliance with the requirements of this circular within three months or such extended time as may be specified by the SECP, the commission added.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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