S. Korea to lift mandatory registration policy for foreign investors in 2023

South Korea’s financial regulator said Tuesday it plans to abolish the existing mandatory registration policy for foreigners investing in local stocks within this year, in line with efforts to meet global standards.

The move came as foreigners are currently required to file personal information with local financial authorities before purchasing listed South Korean stocks.

The policy, which does not exist in other major markets, including the United States, Japan and Germany, has been cited as one of the excessive regulations for foreigners seeking investment opportunities in South Korea.

The Financial Services Commission (FSC) added South Korea will still be able to monitor the local financial market without the registration system and that the revision will allow private foreign investors to invest in local stocks only with their passport number.

Starting in 2024, the FSC added it will also obligate listed firms with assets worth 10 trillion won (US$8 billion) or higher to offer English regulatory filings on information that could make a significant impact on the market.

The FSC plans to expand the scope to cover businesses with assets of 2 trillion won or more starting in 2026.

“(Such changes) will improve the investment environment of the South Korean market by meeting global standards and build ground (for the country) to attract more foreign investment by improving their convenience,” the FSC said in a statement.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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