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9. Information under Memoranda of Understanding

9.1 The DFSA may obtain confidential information pursuant to a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with another Financial Services Regulator. A list of DFSA MOUs is published on the DFSA website.

9.2 This Section describes how the DFSA protects, uses and discloses confidential information that it receives pursuant to an MOU.

Procedures for assessing disclosure

9.3 Article 38 of the Regulatory Law ensures the confidentiality of information provided to the DFSA. This includes any confidential information received by the DFSA from a Financial Services Regulator under a MOU or similar arrangement. All information received under an MOU will be expressly marked to indicate that it is confidential regulatory information provided under an MOU or Multilateral MOU from an identified Financial Services Regulator.

9.4 Article 38 also enables the DFSA to release confidential information to a Financial Services Regulator for the purposes of assisting the performance of its regulatory functions. The release of any confidential information by the DFSA to a third party and the method of releasing this information will be assessed and approved by a senior officer of the DFSA with delegated authority to make such a release. The delegated senior officer will consider the relevant provisions of this Policy Statement (particularly Parts 4, 5 and 6) in deciding whether to release confidential information to third parties.

9.5 Any DFSA staff member identifying the possible release of any confidential information will ensure that the delegated senior officer assessing and approving the release is aware of the origin(s) of the information and the legal basis upon which the release is required to be made.

9.6 The DFSA staff member and the delegated senior officer assessing and approving the release will ensure that:

(i) the receiving party is made fully aware of the protected status of the confidential information;
(ii) the providing Financial Services Regulator has been approached to seek written approval for the information's release to the third party;
(iii) where a providing Financial Services Regulator does not approve the release of the confidential information, the DFSA takes all reasonable efforts, including any legal steps, to protect the information from disclosure;
(iv) if the DFSA's efforts to protect the confidential information from disclosure are unsuccessful, eg. to a Court, the DFSA informs the providing Financial Services Regulator, and requests the receiving party to ensure that the confidential information is not made public.

9.7 Generally, the DFSA will ensure that information released under Article 38 retains its confidential status by imposing conditions on that Financial Services Regulator that the information should only be used for a regulatory purpose and will not be released to any third party without the prior consent of the DFSA.

Where information is subject to a legally enforceable demand

9.8 In cases where the confidential information obtained from a Financial Services Regulator under an MOU is subject to a legally enforceable demand (such as a subpoena, notice or court order), the DFSA will notify the providing Financial Services Regulator when the demand is received by the DFSA.

9.9 In the event of a legally enforceable demand, the DFSA will assert any legal rights, exemptions or privileges to protect such confidential information that are legally available to it. These may include, for example, objections to disclosure based on a claim of public interest immunity (see Section 10 below).