BMA fees raised as mandate expands
Fee increases ranging from single-digit percentage changes, all the way up to a 133 per cent hike in one area, have been made by the Bermuda Monetary Authority.
The fee schedule for 2020 for regulated entities came into effect at the start of the year and has increased fees in a number of categories.
The authority previously undertook a review of peer jurisdictions, comparing fees, services and activities and found that its human and financial resources were “below expected levels given the organisation’s continually expanding mandate and what it will need to achieve in the future”.
The review was done with assistance from an international management consulting firm.
A budget deficit of $1.76 million was reported by the BMA in 2018, its most recently issued full-year report. That was the sixth annual shortfall in a ten-year period, and was covered from the BMA’s general reserve, which shrank to $19.75 million.
In 2018, the authority said that after the global financial crisis of 2007-09, its fee increases had been moderated or not applied in certain years to reduce the impact on the island’s financial-services industry.
In November of that year, the Bermuda Government approved wide-ranging fee increases by the BMA, to be phased in over three years. Among those affected by the change are insurance and reinsurance companies, banks, corporate service providers, trusts and credit unions.
Only selected fees have been changed in the 2020 schedule, among them are increases ranging between 6 and 16 per cent for annual fees under the Banks and Deposit Companies Act 1999.
Fees that fall under the Insurance Act 1978 include changes that range from 6 per cent, up to 45 and 50 per cent hikes. It is in this segment that there is a 133 per cent increase to a fee that relates to letters of credit and guarantees for insurers in class 3A and above. That charge was previously $1,500, and is now $3,500.
There have also been fee increases in the sections covering the Investment Business Act 2003, Investment Funds Act 2006, Money Service Business Act 2016, and Trust (Regulation of Trust business) Act 2001.
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