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150 CSP Licences issued 4 August 2003

In July, the FSC issued the 150th Corporate Service Provider licence. As previously announced, the Board of the Commission considered all outstanding applications by 31 July. In a few cases it was necessary to defer a final decision, typically because the applicant was restructuring or merging.

Chief Executive John Aspden commented:

"Licensing has been a lengthy process and we are pleased to have mostly completed it. We are working with those applicants whose licences have been approved subject to outstanding changes, to resolve the remaining issues so that their licences can be granted.

"While the process has taken longer than we expected at the outset, it has always been a priority to give applicants every reasonable opportunity to address any organisational or regulatory issues. We have tried to be constructive throughout and we have been encouraged by the industry's positive response.

"Inevitably there have been new start-ups and some withdrawals. Over the past 18 months, since licensing became compulsory, we have granted 16 licences to start-ups and have several more under consideration. In comparison, eight licensed CSPs have surrendered their licences over the same period. Allowing for several mergers amongst applicants, we estimate that the total number of CSPs on the Island has been stable."

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