Australia has signed an agreement with the United Kingdom that will benefit its fintech companies looking for improved access to global markets.

The UK-Australia FinTech Bridge, signed in London on Thursday, will deepen ties between the Australian and UK governments and regulatory agencies, according to Australian Treasurer Scott Morrison.

"We will work to identify emerging trends, share policy developments, and position firms for the challenges of entering a foreign market," Morrison said[1]. "It will provide exciting new opportunities for trade and investment into the future, in an ever-increasingly digital world where innovation and competitive edge are paramount.

"Importantly, it presents fintech firms on both sides of the Bridge with a fast track to pursue international expansion and hit the ground running."

The agreement covers collaboration between governments to identify emerging fintech trends and policy issues; sharing of regulatory expertise to facilitate the entry of fintech startups into each jurisdiction's regulatory sandbox; enhancing bilateral trade and investment flows; and promoting engagement between Australian and UK fintech sector bodies to discuss collaboration opportunities.

Industry bodies will lead B2B discussions on the challenges of entering the other market and provide views to governments on other fintech policy issues such as blockchain, regulatory technology (regtech), and data exchange, Morrison added.

UK fintech firms generate £7 billion in revenue annually, according to the Australian government, and raised £1.3 billion of investment last year. Investment in Australian fintech reached a high of over US$656 million in 2016, according to KPMG. [2]

In November last year, the Australia Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) similarly signed an agreement[3] with Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) to provide mutual understanding on financial innovation.


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