During his contribution to the 2010-2011 Budget Debate presentation in May, the Hon. Zhivargo Laing, State Minister of Finance, noted that The Bahamas will be compliant with the International Organisation of Securities Commission’s (IOSCO) Multilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MMoU) Concerning Consultation and Cooperation and Exchange of Information when the new Securities Industry Act and Regulations are promulgated.

IOSCO, recognised as the leading international policy forum for securities regulators with a membership that regulates more than 95% of the world’s securities markets in over 100 jurisdictions, adopted the MMOU as the model for international co‐operation in 2002. The MMoU establishes standards to be applied by IOSCO Members on how they will consult, cooperate, and exchange information for securities regulatory enforcement purposes. At the April 2005 Annual Conference of IOSCO, a timetable was agreed for all Member regulators, not already signatories to the MMoU, to apply to be signatories to the MMoU by January 1, 2010.

Members who applied but did not meet the standards for full compliance with the MMoU, i.e. Signatory ‘A’, were approved as Signatory ‘B’ provided they committed to make the necessary legislative changes to fully comply with all the terms of the MMoU. The Securities Commission of The Bahamas (SCB) was approved as a Signatory ‘B’ on June 10, 2009. Signatory ‘B’ Members now have until January 1, 2013 to meet all the conditions to qualify as Signatory ‘A” to the MMOU.

Minister Laing further stated, *”the draft securities legislation is intended to make The Bahamas compliant with all MMOU standards, in addition to addressing deficiencies that exist in the current legislation, the Securities Industry Act, 1999 and Securities Industry Regulations, 2000.”*

The draft securities legislation is in its final stages of completion, following industry consultations and international expert review. It is expected that the draft legislation will be tabled in Parliament before the end of July, 2010.