FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS ACT, 2004

SCHEDULE 5

Section 66(5)

CLOSURE OF FOREIGN FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS

Approval of closure

1. No foreign financial institution shall close down its business in Seychelles except with the written approval of the Central Bank, which may be given subject to such terms and conditions as the Central Bank may specify; and if approval is granted, the affairs of the institution shall be wound up in accordance with this Schedule.

Compulsory closure

2. (1) Where a revocation of the banking licence of a foreign financial institution has been made final under section 13, the business of that institution in and with respect to Seychelles shall be closed down and its affairs wound up in accordance with this Schedule.

(2) If –

(a) liquidation or winding up proceedings in respect of a foreign financial institution are instituted in the country where its head office is located; or

(b) the Central Bank so decides under paragraph 5(1)(b) of Schedule 3 (seizure),

the Central Bank shall order the business of that institution in and with respect to Seychelles to be closed down and its affairs wound up in accordance with this Schedule.

Notice of closure

3. A notice of closure, giving such information as the Central Bank may require, shall be –

(a) published by the foreign financial institution in the Gazette and in a local newspaper; and

(b) given by the foreign financial institution to the Registrar of Companies.

Appointment of supervising agent

4. (1) The Central Bank shall appoint a qualified person as supervising agent of the closure of the business of that foreign financial institution in and with respect to Seychelles.

(2) The supervising agent shall oversee the winding up of the foreign financial institution under this Schedule and shall –

(a) take all measures necessary to ensure that no assets owned by the institution are removed from Seychelles until all obligations and liabilities incurred by the institution in the conduct of banking business in Seychelles have been covered in accordance with its undertaking under section 5(1)(f); and

(b) report to the Central Bank –

(i) any contravention by the foreign financial institution, or by any director, manager, officer, employee or agent of the institution of this Act or the Central Bank of Seychelles Act;

(ii) any action or proposed action by the foreign financial institution which in his opinion may be to the detriment of depositors with or creditors of the institution in Seychelles.

(3) The supervising agent shall give effect to any direction issued to him by the Central Bank which is not inconsistent with this Act.

(4) In this Schedule and in section 49, "supervising agent" means a supervising agent appointed under this paragraph.

Effect of closure

5. Where the business of a foreign financial institution in and with respect to Seychelles is closed down under this Schedule, the institution shall –

(a) cease to do business in and with respect to Seychelles (except such business as is necessary to effect an orderly closure) –

(i) in the case of a closure under paragraph 1,on such date as the Central Bank may determine; or

(ii) in the case of a closure under paragraph 2,immediately;

(b) repay its depositors in Seychelles and other creditors in respect of its operations in Seychelles;

(c) return all funds and other property held by it in Seychelles to the persons entitled to possession of such funds or property; and

(d) wind up all business and operations in and with respect to Seychelles undertaken prior to the closure.

Ban on removal of assets

6. (1) No person shall –

(a) remove;

(b) assist in removing; or

(c) make or take part in any arrangement for removing,

from Seychelles any assets owned or held by a foreign financial institution until all obligations and liabilities incurred by the institution in the conduct of banking business in Seychelles have been –

(i) fulfilled or met; or

(ii) covered in accordance with the undertaking of the institution under section 5(1)(f).

(2) If the supervising agent is of the opinion that any assets owned or held by a foreign financial institution are likely to be removed from Seychelles in contravention of subparagraph (1), he may apply to the Supreme Court for an order prohibiting that removal and authorising such other action to stop that removal as the Court may determine.

Safe deposit boxes and unclaimed property

7. (1) Any safe deposit boxes, the contents of which have not been withdrawn before such date as may be specified in the notice under paragraph 3 shall be opened in the manner determined by the supervising agent.

(2) The contents of safe deposit boxes opened under subparagraph (1) or any unclaimed property held by the foreign financial institution as a fiduciary, or on hire, loan, deposit or pledge, shall –

(a) if they are monies, be transferred on the direction of the Central Bank to a special account with the Central Bank;

(b) if they are not monies, be referred, on the direction of the Central Bank, to the Minister for such action as he shall determine.

(3) Any items dealt with under subparagraph (2) shall be presumed to be abandoned property, and shall be dealt with in accordance with Part VI (abandoned property) of this Act if within 10 years of the original date of deposit the owner has not evidenced an interest in the items.

Unclaimed funds

8. (1) Unclaimed funds which are not subject to other provisions of this Act shall, on the direction of the Central Bank, be transferred to a special account with the Central Bank and may be used by the Central Bank for such purposes as may be determined by the Central Bank after consultation with the Minister.

(2) If, within 10 years of the date of the publication of the notice of closure under paragraph 3, the owner has not evidenced an interest in funds transferred under subparagraph (1), they shall be presumed to be abandoned property and shall be dealt with in accordance with Part VI (abandoned property) of this Act.

Final revocation of licence

9. (1) Where, in a closure under paragraph 1 or 2 (2), the Central Bank is of the opinion that the foreign financial institution has complied fully with this Schedule, the banking licence of the institution shall be revoked.

(2) Section 13(2) to (5) (taking effect of revocation) and section 16 (appeals against revocation) do not apply to a revocation under this paragraph.