The Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC) has seen a significant increase of 12 per cent in entities under its supervision over the last four years, according to
George Karatzias, the Vice Chairman of CySEC.
During a seminar held this week, Karatzias presented an overview of CySEC’s overall activities.
Subsequently, detailed presentations were conducted by officials from the Licensing, Issuers, Supervision, and Investigations Departments, and a presentation was given on CySEC’s efforts to contribute to financial literacy.
Stressing CySEC’s goal, Karatzias mentioned the Commission’s aim to establish the Cypriot capital market as one of the most reliable and attractive investment destinations.
This would be achieved through effective supervision ensuring investor protection and the healthy growth of the capital market.
Over the past four years, the number of entities under supervision has increased to 837 from 746 in 2019. Around 90 new companies are currently undergoing the licensing process.
Of the total 837 entities, 252 are Cypriot Investment Firms (CIFs), and 322 are Management Companies and Collective Investment Organisations, managing funds exceeding €10.7 billion.
What is more, Karatzias further highlighted CySEC’s expanded supervisory role over Crowdfunding Service Providers, the Cyprus Stock Exchange (CSE), and a Multilateral Trading Facility, the CSE’s ‘New Market’.
CySEC also oversees 52 companies listed on the CSE and 11 securities issuers traded on foreign exchanges.
Additionally, CySEC supervises 135 Administrative Service Providers and serves as the Competent Authority for Cryptocurrency Service Providers, ensuring compliance with anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing regulations.
Moreover, he noted that CySEC maintains the Central Depository Register.
Karatzias emphasised CySEC’s proactive supervision, utilising specialised systems to keep pace with the rapidly digitising sector.
What is more, he explained that the commission invests in process automation using specialised systems, human resources, and new surveillance systems to strengthen its supervisory infrastructure, enhancing overall efficiency and effectiveness.
Discussing regulatory checks carried out by CySEC, Karatzias highlighted that administrative fines totalling €6 million had been imposed in the last three years, with €5.3 million applied to CIFs and €1 million on a single CIF.
“It is important to stress that penalties are not an end in themselves. Our goal is the complete compliance of supervised entities with all their obligations stemming from the regulatory framework,” he stated.
Beyond monetary fines, CySEC takes additional measures, such as potential personal liability for individuals responsible for non-compliance by CIFs.
Finally, he mentioned that CySEC promotes financial literacy and investor education through public warnings and participation in various campaigns aimed at informing and protecting the investing public.