Licensing for CoFI begins

02 August 2023

The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) is now accepting applications for financial institution licences under the Conduct of Financial Institutions (CoFI) regime, to come into force on 31 March 2025.

The full question set and supporting documentation for the licensing application are available in the Financial Institution Licence Guide. The expectation that the requirement to treat customers fairly will apply throughout the lifecycle of a financial institution’s products will, we expect, be a key focus for the FMA when assessing applications.

The FMA expects financial institutions to establish, and have their Boards approve, their fair conduct programmes (FCPs) before they submit their licence applications, although FCPs do not need to be fully implemented until the 31 March start date.

All financial institution licences issued by the FMA are subject to six standard conditions and any additional conditions on a case-by-case basis. 

See our previous commentary for further information on both the licensing application requirements and the standard conditions.

Standard fees (inclusive of GST) for financial institution licensing include:

  • An application fee of NZ$1,024.93;
  • Additional hourly fees for applications that exceed an application assessment time of 6.75 hours; and
  • An authorised body application fee (for each related bodies corporate of the licensee to be considered as part of the application) of NZ$614.95.

Next steps

The FMA anticipates a processing timeframe of 60 working days, subject to variations depending on the nature of the application and the volume and complexity of others being processed at the time.

The FMA is strongly encouraging relevant entities to begin work on the contents of their FCPs and to submit their licensing applications as early as possible, well ahead of 2025.

If you would like more information or assistance with preparing your licensing application, please get in touch with one of our experts.


Our previous insights on CoFI and financial institution licensing

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