The Commission today launches a consultation paper on proposals for increasing the licence fees paid by firms (please click here for a copy of the consultation paper). The consultation period will close on Tuesday 15 September.
The proposals are for an increase of 2.1% across all sectors, based upon Guernsey’s RPI, together with the introduction of a modest fee for fast track applications of £500.
The Commission has not raised its fees for the past two years and has absorbed its increased costs during that time from reserves. This is not sustainable given the increasing expectations being placed on small country regulators, particularly with respect to AML/CFT supervision.
Fast track applications require the same level of regulatory scrutiny to which all applications are submitted but over a much shorter timeframe. They effectively “jump the queue” but for no additional fee. The Commission is of the view that those who wish to have their applications ‘fast tracked’ should be prepared to pay an additional fee in recognition of the special treatment they receive at the expense of all other applications.
Speaking about the proposals, the Commission’s Chairman, Drs Cees Schrauwers, said: “The Commission’s approach to setting licence fees is grounded upon the principle that they should be fair, proportionate and broadly aligned with the cost of regulation. At the same time, the Commission always looks to rigorously control its costs in order to avoid significant annual increases in its fees.”