Guernsey: Guernsey Government Welcomes AIFM Directive Agreement
Last Updated: 28 October 2010

The Commerce and Employment Department of the Guernsey Government welcomes the agreement which has been reached on the terms of the draft AIFM Directive.

The text, which was agreed by the European Council earlier this month, has now been agreed through the trialogues process with representatives of the European Parliament. The Department understands that the Directive will be put to the European Parliament for approval on the 10th and 11th of November, following which there will be a two year period for Member States to implement the Directive in national law.

"Over the past two years this Directive has created uncertainty for the entire EU funds industry," said Carla McNulty Bauer, Minister, Commerce and Employment Department.

"Despite that uncertainty, Guernsey’s funds industry has continued to grow and is now significantly larger than our main rivals. This agreement will ensure Guernsey will continue to prosper as a global domicile for investment funds."

The draft Directive has a number of implications for Guernsey:

  • It preserves national private placement regimes (subject to some minimum harmonisation)
  • It creates a passport for third countries which will be phased in over the coming years. That passport, assessed on the basis of objective criteria by national regulations, is based on the premise of "same rights, same responsibilities".
  • It contains sensible transitional and grandfathering provisions.

Over the coming weeks officers of the Department will be working closely with the Guernsey Financial Services Commission (GFSC) and the Guernsey Investment Funds Association (GIFA) to analyse the Directive in detail to identify any legislative or regulatory changes which may be necessary to ensure that Guernsey gets the maximum benefits of the Directive.

In addition the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), one of the three new European Supervisory Agencies will be tasked with preparing a range of implementing measures for the Directive. It will be vital that Guernsey continues to constructively engage with ESMA and the other European Authorities through that process. The Channel Islands Brussels Office (CIBO) will be a considerable asset.

The Commerce and Employment Minister added: "On any fair and objective assessment Guernsey is well placed to achieve a passport and in the meantime has the certainty of knowing that national regimes will remain in place for the foreseeable future. Obviously the Directive still requires the approval of the European Parliament but the progress that has been made in the past few weeks is encouraging and I am hopeful that the text will be adopted in November. Commerce and Employment is committed to working with the funds industry and regulator to ensure Guernsey can continue to be a leading domicile for investment funds business."

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