For Release: September 16, 1996


WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the New Zealand Securities Commission (NZSC) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) concerning consultation and mutual assistance for the exchange of information. The MOU was signed by Chairperson Brooksley Born on behalf of the CFTC and Chairman Euan Abernethy on behalf of the NZSC during the annual meeting of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) in Montreal, Canada.

Under the MOU, the CFTC and NZSC have arranged to provide each other with "the fullest mutual assistance" permitted by U.S. and New Zealand law in response to requests each authority may make concerning futures and options matters. The assistance includes providing access to information in the files of the requested authority, taking testimony and statements, obtaining information and documents, and conducting compliance inspections or examinations of futures transactions and futures businesses.

CFTC Chairperson Born, commenting on the CFTC's latest enforcement MOU, stated: "This MOU continues the CFTC's long tradition of information-sharing arrangements with international authorities. Such cooperation is very important to authorities such as the CFTC and NZSC in successfully carrying out our mandates to ensure market integrity and investor protection in today's increasingly global futures and options markets. We at the CFTC look forward to working with the NZSC toward successful implementation of the MOU."

NZSC Chairman, Euan Abernethy, commenting on the NZSC's latest enforcement MOU, stated: "The globalization of financial markets, including futures and options, has increased significantly over the past decade. A consequence of this is that national markets are increasingly influenced by market and regulatory developments in other countries. Against this background, it is important that New Zealand continues to be recognized as a jurisdiction where the proper expectation of market participants can be met and enforced. The NZSC welcomes the signing of the MOU with the CFTC as a most significant development in this regard."

In signing the MOU today, the CFTC and NZSC, "recognize the increasing international activity in the futures and options markets and the corresponding need for mutual cooperation as a means of improving their effectiveness in administering and enforcing the futures and options laws and regulations of their respective countries,"

according to the MOU document.

The CFTC has cooperative enforcement arrangements with authorities in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada (Ontario and Quebec), France, Hong Kong, Italy, Mexico, The Netherlands, Spain, Taiwan, and the United Kingdom. It is also authorized to request assistance from Switzerland under the U.S.-Swiss treaty on mutual assistance in criminal matters. The NZSC has cooperative enforcement arrangements with authorities in Australia and has concluded negotiations on an MOU with Hong Kong.