SEBI Streamlines Framework on Centralized Database for Corporate Bonds
Moneylife Digital Team 05 June 2021
Market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has streamlined the framework for centralised database for corporate bonds to provide further ease of access of information for investors. This new framework will be applicable for debt securities issued on or after 1 August 2021.
 
"Pursuant to discussions with market participants, it has been decided to further streamline the database and provide further ease of access of information for investors," the regulator said in a notification.
 
As per the framework, SEBI has provided an updated list of data fields to be maintained in the database along with the manner of filing the same.
 
SEBI has also specified responsibilities of parties involved, contents of the database and manner of submitting the information.
 
In October 2013, SEBI had mandated depositories to jointly create, host and maintain a centralised database of  corporate bonds held in demat form.
 
In the current notification, SEBI said that depositories will continue to jointly create, host, maintain and disseminate the centralised database of corporate bonds held in demat form. Further, all historical data available in the database will continue to be hosted by the depositories.
 
Depositories will have to ensure to have adequate systems and safeguards to maintain the integrity of data and to prevent manipulation of data. Each depository will have to synchronise the database in consultation with the other depositories.
 
Depository, which receives information from an issuer, will have to host the same as well as share it with the other depositories for hosting within three working days from the date of receipt of the information.
 
Depositories will have to provide secure login credentials to issuers, stock exchanges, credit rating agencies and debenture trustees for updating and verifying requisite information in the corporate bond database within the required timelines.
 
Apart from this, the depositories will also need to provide the information available with respect to the redeemable preference shares and securitised debt instruments, in a separate section within the database, in the form as available with them, after sharing the same with the other depository for synchronising and updating the data.
 
SEBI said bond issuers will have to provide information about issuer, issue, instrument classification and its detail, credit rating with the name of credit rating agency (CRA) and date of credit rating and default history information, among others, in the database at the time of allotment of the international securities identification number (ISIN). The ISIN Code is an unique 12-digit alphanumeric code which is used to identify securities. 
 
Depositories will have to verify this information as provided by issuer at the time of activation of ISIN. 
 
Post-listing of securities, issuers shall submit information to any of the stock exchanges where their securities are listed on a periodical basis and/or ‘as and when’ basis. 
Stock exchanges and depositories need to develop a system such that information received by them is updated on the centralised database daily. 
 
Credit rating agencies shall access the database to verify the rating information uploaded by the issuer. In case of any discrepancy, credit rating agencies are required to notify it to stock exchanges and update the correct information in the database within the stipulated time.
 
Debenture trustees should access the database to verify the information regarding default history and other relevant information. In case of any discrepancy, debenture  trustee needs to notify  the  same to  stock  exchanges and update the correct information in the database, within seven days of knowledge of default, SEBI said in the circular. 
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