Asset Management & Investment Funds: Irish Practice Developments - April 2018

Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) (Amendment) Bill 2018 and related matters.

The long awaited Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) (Amendment) Bill 2018 (the Bill) has now been published. The Bill gives effect to the Fourth Money Laundering Directive (Directive (EU) 2015/849 and proposes a range of amendments to existing anti-money laundering legislation set out in the Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) Acts 2010 and 2013. The Bill does not repeal the current legislation. Going forward, all businesses falling within the scope of this legislation will need to be mindful of three separate Acts and any further associated guidance to be issued. The Bill will also implement the most recent recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force, an international standard-setting body. See our detailed analysis here.

The Cabinet also approved a proposal to amend the Criminal Justice (Corruption Offences) Bill 2017 which is currently before the Dáil. The amendment will ensure full implementation of Article 7 of the OECD Convention on the Bribery of Foreign Public Officials by making it an offence to launder the proceeds of bribery outside Ireland involving a foreign public official even if the bribery was not an offence in the place it was carried out. Both Bills form part of the Government's package of measures to tackle 'white collar crime', published in November 2017.

The Department of Finance has responsibility for the transposition of Articles 30 and 31 of 4AMLD, establishing central registers of beneficial ownership for corporates, other legal entities and trusts. These articles are being transposed by secondary legislation, and work on the required Statutory Instruments is understood to be well progressed. The draft Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (5AMLD) sets extended deadlines for the establishment of the central registers of beneficial ownership for companies and trusts (18-20 months respectively after 5AMLD enters into force).

Some approaching compliance deadlines

  • 25 May 2018. GDPR - The General Data Protection Regulation will come into force on 25 May 2018 and will introduce a sweeping new data protection regime.
  • 26 June 2018. AML/CTF - ESA joint guidelines on simplified and enhanced due diligence. The Central Bank expects firms to comply with the ESA joint guidelines on simplified and enhanced due diligence by 26 June 2018.
  • 29 June 2019. CP119 - Deadline for responses to Central Bank Consultation CP119 on amendments to (and consolidation of) the Central Bank UCITS Regulations.
  • 1 July 2018. CP86 - Existing Fund Management Companies (UCITS ManCos, AIFMs, self-managed UCITS and internally managed AIFs) must comply with the new rules which derive from CP86 by 1 July 2018.
  • 21 July 2018. MMF Regulation - The MMF Regulation must be implemented by EU Member States by 21 July 2018. The MMF Regulation introduces new requirements for MMFs in particular, portfolio composition, valuation of assets, diversification, liquidity management and credit quality of investment instruments. Existing UCITS and AIF MMFs must comply with the new rules by 21 January 2019.
  • 31 August, 2018. Fund Profile return - The first Central Bank Fund Profile return is to be prepared for the period up to 30 June 2018, with a submission deadline (via ONR) of 31 August 2018. This 30 June 2018 return applies to all sub-funds authorised by the Central Bank at 30 June 2018 whether they are dormant, have assets or have not launched. The Fund Profile return replaces the IF Annual Sub-Fund Profile return.  All sub-funds, regardless of whether the IF Annual Sub-Fund Profile return to 31 December 2017 has already been submitted to the ONR, will be required to submit the new updated return for the period up to 30 June 2018. Subsequent Fund Profile returns are to be prepared for the period to 31 December. These Fund Profile returns will also carry a submission deadline of 28 February. In 2018 alone, in addition to the 30 June 2018 return, a Fund Profile return will be required made up to 31 December 2018. This additional return will have a submission deadline of 28 February 2019. The Central Bank does not anticipate that the Fund Profile will change from year to year, as changes would most probably reflect changes within the Fund's offering documents.  Therefore, year-to-year updates to the Fund Profile are expected to be minimal and reflect significant changes to a Fund's profile.
  • 1 September 2018. Money Market Funds - Money Market Funds which are availing of a transitional period must submit all documents requiring review to the Central Bank no later than 1 September 2018.
  • 30 November 2018. Filing Annual accounts of Variable Capital Companies in CRO - The Companies (Accounting) Act 2017 obliges UCITS investment companies and AIF investment companies to file annual accounts for financial years commencing on or after 1 January 2017 with the CRO within eleven months of the relevant financial year end. By 30 November 2018 we will see the first such accounts being filed.
  • 1 January 2019. Benchmarks Regulation - Prospectuses of UCITS and of funds which are subject to the Prospectus Directive, which reference a benchmark and which have been approved prior to 1 January 2018, will need to be updated at the next update and in any event by no later than 1 January 2019 to include information on the benchmark.

The above list does not cover tax, FATCA or CRS filings, ad hoc filings (such as regulatory reports) or filings of annual accounts (and related documents which include any annual FDI Return) and semi-annual accounts or other similar returns which deadlines will vary to reflect the particular entity's year end.

New Central Bank process for Retail Investor AIF Risk Management Processes (RMPs).

A new Retail Investor AIF (RIAIF) application process has been introduced by the Central Bank of Ireland (Central Bank). This follows on from the implementation in January 2018 of new procedures for the submission of UCITS RMP documents. RIAIFs will be required to submit a new Central Bank form confirming compliance with legislative and regulatory requirements with the RMP and other authorisation/ approval documentation.

Central Bank gives a regulatory perspective on Innovation and technology in financial services.  

Derville Rowland, Director General Financial Conduct, Central Bank delivered a speech giving a regulatory perspective on Innovation and technology in financial services.

Central Bank

14 new platforms and 62 new funds (including sub-funds) were authorised by the Central Bank in March 2018.

Date publised: 02 May 2018