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Data Retention Directive is to be Succeeded in the UK by Emergency Data Law

  July 17, 2014     By CSB Advocates
The EU Data Retention Directive (2006/24/EC) was introduced into EU legislation during the aftermath of the terrorist attacks in Madrid, London and New York, and provided that communications firms should keep data about subscribers’ activities for a period of between 6 and 24 months.

AIFMD News Update: Distinguishing between Open and Closed-Ended Funds

  July 17, 2014     By CSB Advocates
When the AIFMD was adopted, no harmonised definition of “closed-ended” Alternative Investment Funds (“AIFs”) was provided within the Directive’s text.

FATCA - Malta on the Way to Implementing its IGA

  July 15, 2014     By CSB Advocates
Following the signature of the intergovernmental agreement (“IGA”) between Malta and the US on the 16th December, 2013 whereby the latter agreed to implement Foreign Account Tax Compliance provisions (commonly known as FATCA) in Malta, the Inland Revenue Department (“IRD”) has issued draft FATCA Regulations and Guidelines implementing the said intergovernmental agreement.

A Potential Regulatory Regime for Virtual Currencies is Proposed by EBA

  July 15, 2014     By CSB Advocates
The European Banking Authority (EBA) published on the 4th of July 2014 an Opinion addressed to the EU Council, European Commission and European Parliament setting out the requirements that would be needed to regulate ‘virtual currencies'.

The Regulation of Virtual Currencies - A Positive Step Undertaken by the EBA

  July 7, 2014     By CSB Advocates
On Friday the 4th of July the European Banking Authority (EBA) published an opinion addressed to the EU Council, European Commission and European Parliament outlining its view on how ‘virtual currencies' should be regulated.

An Update on the UCITS V Directive

  July 6, 2014     By CSB Advocates
The UCITS V Directive shall shortly be published in the Official Journal of the European Union later on this year.

Loan Funds Take the Stage in Malta

  June 17, 2014     By CSB Advocates
Spurred by various enquiries on the matter, the MFSA has last week launched the Investment Services Rules for Loan Funds (the “Rules”) which provide for the licensing and regulation of collective investment schemes investing through loans (“Loan Funds”). This paper will analyse the Rules and how these fit into the current Maltese fund legislation.

Part-Time Self-Employed Tax Submission in Malta

  June 16, 2014     By CSB Advocates
The form for the submission for tax purposes of part-time, self-employed individuals has been amended by virtue of Legal Notice 186 of 2014 [Part-Time (Forms of Self-Employed) (Amendment) Rules, 2014], therefore replacing the previous form in toto.

Netflix Accused of Mudslinging

  June 12, 2014     By CSB Advocates
Verizon, the US telecommunications giant, has issued Netflix with a “cease and desist” letter following media reports claiming that Netflix was blatantly telling its customers that the Verizon network was responsible for faulty streaming.

Moneyval's Statement Calling for Enhanced Due Diligence Measures for Bosnia and Herzegovina Transactions

  June 12, 2014     By CSB Advocates
On 1st June 2014, the Council of Europe Committee of Experts on the Evaluation of Anti-Money Laundering Measures and the Financing of Terrorism (MONEYVAL) issued a public statement about the persistence of deficiencies in the anti-money laundering and counter financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) regime in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Individual Investor Programme of the Republic of Malta

  June 9, 2014     By Mamo TCV Advocates
The Maltese Government has introduced the Individual Investor Programme to enable the state to grant citizenship, by way of a certificate of naturalization, to foreign individuals and families who contribute to the economic development of Malta.

The Protection of Depositors in the Event of a Bank Failure

  June 2, 2014     By CSB Advocates
The liability of financial supervisory authorities and deposit-guarantee schemes. However, it has proved not to be sufficient: bank failures still do happen, causing serious negative consequences not only on depositors’ personal level – they become unable to recover their savings – but also on a general level, since the solidity of the financial sector will appear undermined. With a view to limit such risks, deposit-guarantee schemes have been created and are being constantly improved.

Corporation Ordered to Pay €205,694, in Lieu of Salaries and Repatriation Expenses

  May 27, 2014     By CSB Advocates
Last month Judge Padovani Grima ordered the Ladybug Corporation to pay the 22 crew members, the sum of €205,694, in lieu of salaries and repatriation expenses, after that the owners had stopped communication with the International Transport Workers’ Federation, refused to take calls and had abandoned the crew and vessel.

Is Apple in Breach of EU Consumer Rights Law?

  May 27, 2014     By CSB Advocates
On the 13th May 2014 the Norwegian Consumer Council lodged a complaint against Apple with Norway’s Consumer Ombudsman. According to the complaint, Apple’s iCloud service violates European consumer law by allowing Apple to change its terms and conditions at any time without giving notice to its customers.

Update on MiFID II and MiFIR

  May 26, 2014     By CSB Advocates
ESMA, the European Securities and Markets Authority issued consultation documents for the implementation of the revised Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II) and Regulation (MiFIR) on 22nd May 2014.

Oracle vs Google – Software Copyright Case

  May 21, 2014     By CSB Advocates
The US Court of Appeals ruled last Monday the 12th of May that software source code can qualify for copyright protection in certain circumstances.

Google Receives Influx of Take-Down Requests

  May 20, 2014     By CSB Advocates
Google has certainly had some experience dealing with take-down requests in the past – primarily dealing with copyright infringing content – but nothing was to prepare it for the overwhelming influx of requests it reportedly received following the ECJ ruling on the subject last week.

US Authorities Granted Power to Search Foreign Servers

  May 7, 2014     By CSB Advocates
Last week a district judge in New York ruled that US authorities can access and search through electronic data stored by US companies on servers based outside the US.

An Update on MiFID II/MIFIR in Malta

  April 30, 2014     By CSB Advocates
On the 23rd of April 2014, the European Parliament adopted updated rules for MiFID II. The Directive and the Regulation are expected to enter into force in June 2014.

Malta - Industry Update - UCITS V

  April 30, 2014     By CSB Advocates
On the 25 February 2014 an agreement was reached for the amendment of the UCITS Directive (2009/65/EC). UCITS V has been designed to enhance investor confidence and protection by introducing additional safeguards:

MFSA Clarifies the Limits Applicable to Cross Sub-Fund Investments

  April 30, 2014     By CSB Advocates
Subject to certain conditions, a sub-fund of a PIF or of an AIF which is constituted as a SICAV is allowed to invest up to 50% of its assets into another sub-fund or sub-funds within the same umbrella scheme.

Malta Confirms its Individual Investor Programme (IIP)

  April 30, 2014     By CSB Advocates
The Malta Individual Investor Programme (IIP) is to allow for the grant of citizenship by a certificate of naturalization to foreign individuals and their families who contribute to the economic development of Malta.

Regulating Corporate Services Providers in Malta

  April 30, 2014     By CSB Advocates
On the 24th December 2013, Chapter 529 of the Laws of Malta was promulgated, comprising the new Company Service Providers Act. This Act aims to regulate corporate services providers with a view to strengthen the industry’s arsenal against abuse of the financial system for the purposes of money laundering and terrorist financing.

EU Mobile Roaming Charges - Moving Towards an Open Internet

  April 3, 2014     By CSB Advocates
The concept of ‘net neutrality’, or of ‘open internet’, refers to the notion that internet service providers and governments should treat all data on the Internet equally. Advocates of this concept envisage an internet where people can use their internet connection from anywhere and for anything with no additional charges and/or restrictions.

The Fage Greek Yoghurt Case

  March 26, 2014     By CSB Advocates
The world renowned manufacturer of Greek Yoghurt, FAGE, has recently won an ‘extended passing-off’ case against Chobani UK Limited and Chobani, Inc in the United Kingdom. Interestingly, an extended passing-off claim, unlike a classic passing-off claim, may be brought by one or more members of a class of traders which share the collective goodwill in a mark.

The EU Court Rules Linking to Free Web Content is Legal

  March 13, 2014     By CSB Advocates
Last month the European Court ruled that websites can link to freely available content without the permission of the copyright holder.

Merkel Calls for Data Protection Reform in Europe

  February 28, 2014     By CSB Advocates
The strengthening of data protection laws in Europe has been a pet cause for German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, for some time now. In July 2013, Merkel was strongly backed by the European commission in her call for tougher data protection laws, particularly in the ICT sector.

Jurisdictions with Strategic Deficiencies Identified by FATF

  February 27, 2014     By CSB Advocates
On 21st February 2014, the MFSA issued a Notice to Financial Services Licence Holders informing them on the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) identifying jurisdictions with strategic deficiencies, as outlined in the recent publication of two public documents. These countries are considered to have strategic deficiencies regarding anti-money laundering& and combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT).

Surf’s Up: New Consumer Directive Makes some Waves - Malta

  February 19, 2014     By CSB Advocates
In Europe, online sales are set to reach 191 billion Euro by the year 2017. Faced with these numbers, businesses simply cannot afford to pass up the opportunities presented to them by online channels. Neither can they afford to remain in the dark about developments in the e-commerce regulatory sector. The ever-changing landscape of the world market necessitates a fast reaction time and a keen adaptability for businesses to remain relevant.

New Amendment to the Highly Qualified Persons Rules - Malta

  February 13, 2014     By CSB Advocates
Legal Notice 16 of 2014, has brought into effect amendments to the Highly Qualified Persons Rules, applicable retrospectively from year of assessment 2013.

The Malta-Alderney MOU: Is It a Game-changer?

  January 30, 2014     By CSB Advocates
Following the announcement of the signature of a bilateral Memorandum of Understanding between Malta and Alderney between the Malta Lotteries and Gaming Authority (LGA) and the Alderney Gambling Control Commission (AGCC) on the 9th October 2013, several operators await further details about the MoU with some anticipation.

Managing changes in Material Interest in Maltese Listed Companies: A Survivor’s Guide

  January 27, 2014     By CSB Advocates
The Regulatory Landscape: Whilst the Maltese Companies Act (Chapter 386, Laws of Malta) (the “Act”) provides the general legal framework for the creation and operation of public companies, listed companies are also subject to the Listing Rules (the “Listing Rules”) issued by the Listing Authority in virtue of powers granted by Articles 11 and 13 of the Financial Markets Act (Cap.345 of the Laws of Malta).

MiFID II – Taking it to the next level

  January 23, 2014     By CSB Advocates
After two years of negotiations, on 14th January 2014 a high-level agreement was reached between the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission on the updated rules for markets in financial instruments which are designed to address certain shortcomings of the first Directive.

AIFMD: Distinguishing between Open and Closed-Ended Funds

  December 30, 2013     By CSB Advocates
When the AIFMD was adopted, no harmonised definition of “closed-ended” Alternative Investment Funds (“AIFs”) was provided within the Directive’s text.

AIFMD – Implementation of the Depositary Lite Provisions - Malta

  December 12, 2013     By CSB Advocates
Following the finalisation of the consultation process which commenced on the 18th September 2013, the MFSA has revised the Investment Services rules for Investment Services Providers in order to introduce the Depositary Lite regime.

Malta Named European Domicile of Choice - HFR SP, 2013

  November 28, 2013     By CSB Advocates
The prestigious Hedge Funds Review Service Provider Rankings (HFR SP) 2013, has ranked Malta as Europe’s top hedge fund domicile, marking another achievement for Malta’s ever growing financial services sector and reaffirming its position as a leading financial jurisdiction.

Nomad Aviation Granted Air Operator Certificate from Malta

  November 8, 2013     By CSB Advocates
Nomad Aviation (Europe) Ltd., a subsidiary of Nomad Aviation AG in Switzerland has received its Air Operator Certificate (AOC) from Transport Malta’s Civil Aviation Directorate. CSB Advocates is proud to have assisted the Nomad team with this process.

Malta Citizenship Scheme Presented

  November 7, 2013     By CSB Advocates
The Maltese Prime Minister has presented the Individual Investor Program (IIP), a scheme that will grant Maltese citizenship against investment by high net worth individuals (HNWI).

Malta – Liechtenstein Doble Taxation Treaty

  November 7, 2013     By CSB Advocates
Malta's continuous effort in extending its tax treaty network (nearly 70 treaties entered into by Malta up to the end of October 2013) is again evidenced by a new tax treaty signed with Liechtenstein.

Virtual Currencies - A Question of Trust

  November 3, 2013     By CSB Advocates
The pressing need for regulatory clarification on Bitcoin and other virtual currencies in Europe and beyond.

Updated Article Life in the Sun: The Ease of Benefitting from Tax Residence in Malta

  October 30, 2013     By CSB Advocates
Further to the suspension of the Permanent Residents Scheme in December 2010, the Government of Malta has put in place a scheme for special tax status aimed at attracting internationally mobile, high net worth individuals (HNWI) to become tax resident in our islands and benefit from a favorable tax rate of 15% on any income remitted into Malta.

UCITS Report: Can a Leopard Change its Spots?

  October 25, 2013     By CSB Advocates
The European UCITS brand is a seal of quality recognized in financial centers the world over, spanning from Asia to the Americas. The widespread appeal of Ucits-compliant funds exists notwithstanding the significant additional compliance burden that is pinned unto UCITS-compliant managers. This is a success story that began in 1985 and has undergone three subsequent and significant amendments, with another one, possibly two, in the regulatory pipeline.

Special Tax Rate - Malta

  October 4, 2013     By CSB Advocates
It was reported in the past weeks that a “total of 320 professionals who have taken up residence in Malta are benefiting from a maximum tax rate of 15% on their €75,000-plus salaries”.

World Economic Forum Confirms Malta’s Placing as a Top-20 Financial Services Jurisdiction

  October 2, 2013     By CSB Advocates
The Global Competiveness Report 2013-2014, prepared by the World Economic Forum, has ranked Malta’s financial services sector amongst the top 20 world nations, out of 148, with regards to issues related to soundness of its banking institutions (14th), the regulation of Securities Exchanges (17th) and the strength and reporting standards (13th), thereby reaffirming Malta’s position as a leading financial jurisdiction.

AIFMD - MFSA Issued a Consultation Document on the Depositary Lite Regime - Malta

  October 2, 2013     By CSB Advocates
On the 27th June 2013 the MFSA launched the new Investment Services Rulebooks which effectively transposed the AIFMD into the MFSA’s Rules.

Maritime Labor Convention (MLC) Comes into Force - Malta

  August 22, 2013     By CSB Advocates
The Maritime Labor Convention has come into force on the 20th of August 2013, after its adoption by the International Labor Organisation in February 2006.

The Relevance of Cybersecurity Risk Management - Malta

  August 20, 2013     By CSB Advocates
The majority of enterprises nowadays rely on information technology as an essential tool for meeting their business objectives as well as safeguarding their intellectual property, financial information and the Company’s reputation, amongst others. Concurrently, critical digital assets are being targeted and the potential impacting businesses has never been greater.

ESMA’s Opinion on the Practical Arrangements for the Late Transposition of the AIFMD

  August 8, 2013     By CSB Advocates
ESMA - the European Securities and Markets Authority - published its opinion on arrangements for the late transposition of the AIFMD on 1st August 2013.

Reduced VAT on Short-term Yacht Charters Commencing in Malta

  August 5, 2013     By CSB Advocates
On the 29th July 2013, the VAT Department published guidelines in relation to the Malta VAT treatment of short-term yacht charters starting in Malta, which guidelines are largely similar to the interpretation which applicable to long-term yacht leases.

Payment Services New Rules for the Benefit of Consumers and Retailers - EU

  August 5, 2013     By CSB Advocates
In order to adapt the EU payments market to the opportunities of the single market and to support the growth of the EU economy, the European Commission adopted a package on 24th July 2013.

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