• AU-1.1 AU-1.1 Licensing

    • AU-1.1.1

      No person may:

      (a) Operate as a representative office within or from the Kingdom of Bahrain unless duly licensed by the CBB;
      (b) Hold themselves out to be licensed by the CBB unless they have as a matter of fact been so licensed; or
      (c) Market any financial services in the Kingdom of Bahrain unless:
      (i) Allowed to do by the terms of a license issued by the CBB;
      (ii) The activities come within the terms of an exemption granted by the CBB by way of a Directive; or
      (iii) Has obtained the express written permission of the CBB to offer financial services.
      Amended: January 2013
      December 2010

    • AU-1.1.2

      For the purposes of Rule AU-1.1.1(a), please refer to Section AU-1.3 for the definition of 'regulated representative office services'. Such activities will be deemed to be undertaken within or from the Kingdom of Bahrain if, for example, the person concerned:

      (a) Uses an address situated in the Kingdom of Bahrain for its correspondence; or
      (b) Directly contacts clients, who are resident within the Kingdom of Bahrain.
      December 2010

    • AU-1.1.2A

      In accordance with Resolution No.(16) for the year 2012 and for the purpose of Subparagraph AU-1.1.1(c), the word 'market' refers to any promotion, offering, announcement, advertising, broadcast or any other means of communication made for the purpose of inducing recipients to purchase or otherwise acquire financial services in return for monetary payment or some other form of valuable consideration.

      Added: January 2013

    • AU-1.1.2B

      Persons in breach of Subparagraph AU-1.1.1(c) are considered in breach of Resolution No.(16) for the year 2012 and are subject to penalties under Articles 129 and 161 of the CBB Law (see also Section EN-9.3).

      Added: January 2013

    • AU-1.1.3

      Financial institutions wishing to be licensed as a representative office to undertake regulated representative office services within or from the Kingdom of Bahrain must apply in writing to the CBB.

      December 2010

    • AU-1.1.4

      An application for a license must be in the form prescribed by the CBB and must contain, inter alia:

      (a) Form 1 Application for a representative office license must be filled online. The Form is available on the CBB website under Eservices/online Forms; and
      (b) Form 3 Application for Approved Person Status for the controlled function.
      Amended: July 2019
      December 2010

    • AU-1.1.5

      The CBB will review the application and duly advise the applicant in writing when it has:

      (a) Granted the application without conditions;
      (b) Granted the application subject to conditions specified by the CBB; or
      (c) Refused the application, stating the grounds on which the application has been refused and the process for appealing against that decision.
      December 2010

    • AU-1.1.6

      Detailed rules and guidance regarding information requirements and processes for licenses can be found in Section AU-4.1. As specified in Paragraph AU-4.1.12, the CBB will provide a formal decision on a license application within 60 calendar days of all required documentation having been submitted in a form acceptable to the CBB.

      December 2010

    • AU-1.1.7

      All applicants seeking a representative office license must satisfy the CBB that they meet, by the date of authorisation, the minimum criteria for licensing, as contained in Chapter AU-2. Once licensed, licensees must maintain these criteria on an on-going basis.

      December 2010

    • Vetting of a Name

      • AU-1.1.8

        Representative offices must seek prior written approval from the CBB for their corporate name or changes then; the name of the foreign financial institution (Head Office) must only be used by the representative office in conjunction with the description "representative office". This may include the office sign, letterheads, advertising material and business cards (See also GR-2.1).

        December 2010

    • Suitability

      • AU-1.1.9

        Those seeking authorisation must satisfy the CBB as to their suitability to carry out the regulated representative office services for which they are seeking authorisation.

        December 2010

      • AU-1.1.10

        In assessing applications for a license, the CBB will assess whether an applicant satisfies the licensing conditions (as specified in Chapter AU-2) with respect to the regulated representative office services that the applicant proposes undertaking.

        December 2010

      • AU-1.1.11

        In addition to the licensing conditions specified in Chapter AU-2 the CBB, in considering an application shall also take into consideration the following:

        (a) The reputation and financial standing (including financial standing on a consolidated basis) of the applicant,
        (b) The consolidated supervisory arrangements, if any, for the applicant in any other jurisdiction and the opinion of the relevant supervisory authority therefore,
        (c) The previous 3 years track-record, as a minimum, of the applicant, its owners and management, both as regards probity and in relation to the activities to be undertaken, and
        (d) The suitability of the proposal and the effect on the financial sector in Bahrain of the applicant being granted a license.
        December 2010