Sunday, January 12, 2014

ESMA Proposes Standards under MiFID on Acquirer of Investment Firm

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) proposed standards implementing provisions of the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) requiring Member States to make publicly available the information necessary to carry out the assessment of a proposed acquirer of an investment firm. This information, which must be provided by the proposed acquirer at the time of the initial notification, is aimed at ensuring that competent authorities are provided with adequate and proportionate information in order to assess the acquisition.

The proposed standards establish an exhaustive list of information referred to in Article 10b(4) of MiFID and contain standard forms, templates and procedures for the cooperation and exchange of information between the relevant competent authorities as referred to in MiFID. ESMA submitted the draft standards to the European Commission by January 1, 2014. The Commission has three months to decide whether to endorse ESMA’s draft standards.

The main and driving purpose of the proposed draft is to develop an exhaustive list of information to be included by proposed acquirers in their notification to the relevant competent authority. The aim is to set up a harmonized, common list of information that provides legal certainty, clarity and predictability with regard to the assessment process and to the regulatory decision. The proposed standards will comprise clearly specified criteria for the prudential assessment, noted ESMA, which must be applied consistently across Member States.

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