I have already explained why we are acting to create a new process so that the FCA can more quickly cancel the authorisation of firms that it believes are no longer continuing regulated activity. Schedule 11 amends the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 to give the FCA the necessary power to do that If it appears to the FCA that an FCA authorised person is no longer carrying out a regulated activity, it can vary or cancel that firm’s permissions. Examples of where the FCA might pursue this approach could be when the firm has failed to pay its fees or levies or provide information to the FCA as is required in the FCA handbook.
The schedule sets the conditions that must be met for the FCA to vary or cancel the authorisation, which include giving written notice to the firm that appears to be no longer carrying out a regulated activity and allowing the firm an opportunity to respond. It also includes a process for annulling any cancellation or variation and establishes a right of appeal for the firm.
As I have said, I want to ensure that consumers can take informed financial services decisions and, to achieve that, we need to ensure that the financial services register is accurate and that consumers are not exposed to unnecessary risk. I therefore recommend the schedule stand part to the Bill.