本周，英国金融市场行为管理局（后文简称FCA）宣布完成金融科技沙盒计划试点企业遴选，提出申请的69个企业中共有24个入选。在英国银行家联合会会议上，FCA战略与竞争负责人Christopher Woolard表示，这项名为《项目创新》（"Project Innovate"）的沙盒计划为期两年，致力于帮助金融科技相关企业理清和适应监管环境，创造出真正审核市场的金融科技产品。
The UK's Financial Conduct Authority has accepted 24 applicants, from a total of 69, to participate in its fintech sandbox, where innovative financial products can be tested before proceeding to authorisation. Speaking at a British Bankers' Association conference, Christopher Woolard, director of strategy and competition at the FCA, provided a two-year progress report on the watchdog's Project Innovate, designed to help incumbents and fintech startups navigate the regulatory maze and get new tech-driven products to market.
He says interest in the sandbox has exceeded expectations, with applicants coming from a wide range of sectors including retail banking, insurance, advice and profiling and IPO, and from a spectrum of geographies, including Singapore, Denmark, USA and Canada.Of the 69 applicants, seven came from payment firms - including blockchain firms.
Alongside, the sandbox, the FCA has also fielded 19 applications for the new Advice Unit, which was set up in the wake of the Financial Advice Market Review as a way of supporting firms developing automated models which seek to deliver lower cost advice.
In total, nine firms were accepted onto the unit, of which eight were from established financial services firms, "who want to bring automated advice to the market at scale".
Lastly, Woolard touched on the area of RegTech, a developing area in which technology is applied to unwinding the masses of red tape suffocating business development. The watchdog held its first TechSprint hackathon earlier this year, bringing together a cross-section of financial services providers and technology companies to develop prototype solutions to overcome seemingly intractable access barriers.