The SFDR requires financial market participants and financial advisers to make pre-contractual disclosures to investors on how they integrate ESG factors in their risk and decision-making processes. Amongst other participants, the SFDR will require AIFMs, UCITS management companies and MiFID firms managing third-party funds to ensure that adequate disclosures are included in offering documentation of funds under management.

In view thereof, the MFSA has introduced a fast-track filing process that will apply to revisions of offering documents of Malta-based collective investment schemes to reflect Level 1 text of the SFDR. The fast-track solution enables participants to 'self-certify' their compliance with SFDR and to notify the MFSA accordingly. The notification shall include a number of supporting documents prepared by or on behalf of the scheme (as the case may be, depending on whether the fund is self-managed or third-party managed).

The said process shall apply until the SFDR deadline falling on the 10th March 2021, and any submissions made after the said date shall be treated as any other change to an offering document. The MFSA has clarified that the fast-track process is applicable to those changes reflecting SFDR requirements only, and any other changes should be submitted under separate cover and subject to the standard authorisation process.

DF can assist financial market participants and financial advisers in meeting their SFDR obligations, including the implementation of the above-described process, revisions to other pre-contractual and website disclosures, as well as reviews of relevant policy manuals.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.