The LEI is a unique, 20-digit code associated with a single legal entity in accordance with the ISO 17442 standard. The LEI is a reference data tool to standardize how a counterparty is identified on financial transactions. Its goal is to help improve the measuring and monitoring of systemic risk and support more cost-effective compliance with regulatory reporting requirements. A single legal entity should only be assigned one LEI globally.
It is important to distinguish between being eligible for an LEI and being required to have one. As defined in ISO standard 17442, any legal entity that enters into a financial transaction is eligible for an LEI.
As defined in ISO 17442, the standard underlying the Legal Entity Identifier (LEI), the term ‘legal entity’ includes, but is not limited to, unique parties that are legally or financially responsible for the performance of financial transactions or have the legal right in their jurisdiction to enter independently into legal contracts, regardless of whether they are incorporated or constituted in some other way (e.g. trust, partnership, contractual). It excludes natural persons, but includes governmental organizations and supranationals.
Any legal requirement to have an LEI will come from national financial regulators. Below are examples of legal requirements in Singapore and Europe that will determine if your company requires an LEI.
(i) Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) OTC Derivatives Trade Reporting - Securities and Futures
Since April 2014, any organisation subjected to the above is required to have an LEI. More details can be found here.
(i) Derivatives Trading and the European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR)
Since February 2014, any organisation participating in the trade of derivatives is required to comply with the EMR (EuropeanMarket Infrastructure Regulation) and obligated to have an LEI.
(ii) Compliance with the European MiFID II/MiFIR regulation
As of January 2018, in accordance with the new European MiFID II/MiFIR regulation (Art.26 of regulation nr.600/2014), European financial institutions must notify their national financial services authority / regulator of all transactions carried out relating to certain financial instruments. Each legal entity, active in trade of financial instruments offered on a trading platform (or underlying products being exchanged on a platform), such as shares, bonds, warrants, state loans, warrants, state loans and state notes is required to be identified with an LEI. (This measure does not apply to some investments, investment insurances, term deposits, deposits and savings certificates products.)
All legal entities wishing to purchase or sell one of the above mentioned financial instruments, is required to identify itself by an LEI. The legal entity is responsible for obtaining its own LEI.
A list of regulatory initiatives relevant to LEI adoption is available here.
What are the benefits of LEI?
As global business and third-party relationships becomes more complex, the need for clear and speedy business identification grows. Common standards, like LEI, enable better identification and better data sharing, helping to lower costs and speed up business processes. Of course, appropriate due diligence is still necessary; one number won’t magically solve all Know Your Business (KYB) requirements. But, as an added data point and extra check to ensure you can trust your business relationships, LEI is another useful tool for international business growth.
Who issues LEI?
LEI issuers – also referred to as Local Operating Units (LOUs) – supply registration, renewal and other services, and act as the primary interface for legal entities wishing to obtain an LEI. Only organizations duly accredited by the Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF) are authorized to issue LEIs. GS1 Global is an LOU, whereas GS1 Singapore supports the LOU as a local Registration Agent.
What is the cost involved for an LEI?
The cost of an LEI varies since it depends on the type of services require by the company. Click here to know more about GS1 service offerings.
How long is an LEI valid for?
An LEI is valid for a year. Companies are required to renew their LEI annually. Subsequently, GS1 would send an automated email notification 2 months before the LEI expiry date to the registered email address used upon application.
Why am I being transferred out to another site during LEI application, renewal and transfer?
For a new, renew or transfer request of an LEI, companies will be directed to the GS1 Global LEI site for the processing of request. GS1 Global is accredited by the Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF) as the official issuer of LEI. GS1 Singapore is a qualified Registration Agent. We assist GS1 Global in the process of LEI registration for companies.
Who is GLEIF?
Established by the Financial Stability Board in June 2014, the Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF) is tasked to support the implementation and use of the Legal Entity Identifier (LEI). The foundation is backed and overseen by the LEI Regulatory Oversight Committee, representing public authorities from around the globe that have come together to jointly drive forward transparency within the global financial markets. GLEIF is a supra-national not-for-profit organization headquartered in Basel, Switzerland. For more info on GLEIF, click here - https://www.gleif.org/en
What is a Local Operating Unit ?
LEI issuers – also referred to as Local Operating Units (LOUs) – supply registration, renewal and other services, and act as the primary interface for legal entities wishing to obtain an LEI. Only organizations duly accredited by the Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF) are authorized to issue LEIs.
What is a Registration Agent?
The Registration Agent's role in the Global LEI System is directly connected to the LEI issuing organization. LEI issuing organizations - also referred to as a Local Operating Units - supply registration, renewal and other services, act as the primary interface for legal entities wishing to obtain an LEI. A legal entity is not limited to using an LEI issuer in its own country. Instead, it can use the registration services of any Local Operating Unit that is accredited and qualified to validate LEI registrations within its jurisdiction. The Global LEI System is designed to encourage competition between LEI issuers to the benefit of legal entities seeking to obtain an LEI. A Registration Agent acts as a third party service provider that assists the LEI issuing organization with the performance of its duties in the Global LEI System.
1. Looking to transfer your LEI account to GS1? Click here to transfer today!
2. Is your LEI expiring soon? Click here to extend the validity of your LEI number quickly!
You may contact us via email to LEI_Support@gs1.org.sg or call us @ 6826 3082 for any other queries on LEI.
Alternatively, you may also want to download our user guide for more assistance on the LEI registration.