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UK and US regulators team up for fintech innovation

 |  February 20, 2018

The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced Monday, February 19, that they had inked a deal to collaborate and support FinTech initiatives called the Cooperation Arrangement on Financial Technology Innovation “FinTech Arrangement”.

According to a press release, the two organizations will support each other’s efforts via the FinTech initiatives LabCFTC and FCA Innovate.

“International borders shouldn’t act as a barrier to innovation and competition in financial services, and that is why agreements like the one we have signed today with the CFTC, a forward-looking and proactive regulator, are so important,” said Andrew Bailey, CEO of the FCA. “As our first agreement of this kind with a US regulator, we look forward to working with LabCFTC in assisting firms, both here in the UK and in the US, who want to scale and expand internationally in our respective markets.”

As part of the alliance, the FCA and CFTC will be hosting a joint event in London to showcase how firms can work with both regulators on FinTech projects.

“The FCA’s Project Innovate is the gold standard for thoughtful regulatory engagement with emerging technological innovation,” said CFTC chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo in the same press release. “This is the first FinTech innovation arrangement for the CFTC with a non-US counterpart. We believe that by collaborating with the best-in-class FCA FinTech team, the CFTC can contribute to the growing awareness of the critical role of regulators in 21st-century digital markets.”

The two are focusing on sharing information about FinTech market trends and developments, and on offering referrals for FinTech companies that want to enter each other’s markets. The deal was made possible by FCA and CFTC FinTech labs which were created in 2014 and May of 2017, respectively. They were designed to aid businesses with innovative ideas, navigate the regulatory landscape and engage with the regulator, both said in the press release.

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