ESMA outlines 2018 plans

The European Securities and Markets Authority has outlined its Work Programme expected for 2018, which includes continued focus on supervisory convergence and risk assessment in pursuit of its key objectives of enhancing investor protection, and promoting “stable and orderly” financial markets.

The planned work also references Esma’s Strategic Orientation 2016-2020, which has previously outlined a shift in its focus from creating a rulebook for securities markets to ensuring convergence is stepped up, supporting EU single market goals, especially, now, in light of the Brexit – which the regulator says “will require it to be prepared to adapt and reprioritise the 2018 WP as needed.”

Key objectives for 2018 include:

  • Providing guidance and promoting the consistent application of Mifid II and Mifir by market participants and National Competent Authorities (NCAs);
  • Ensuring the quality, integration, usability and transparency of the data that Esma collects;
  • Contributing to the development of Level 2 measures in relation to the revised Prospectus regime; and
  • Enhancing the effectiveness and lasting impact of supervisory activities at individual credit rating agencies (CRA) and trade repositories (TR) level.

Steven Maijoor, Esma chair (pictured above), said the priorities also reflected the regulator’s objective of “ensuring a smooth transition to the new Mifid regime”.

The Work Programme will therefore look to:

  • Promoting supervisory convergence – Continue to support sound, efficient and consistent implementation of new supervisory requirements, with particular emphasis on MiFID/R; complete IT systems either required by legislation or which increase ESMA’s and/or NCAs’ efficiency; and develop and apply convergence tools, including peer reviews and stress tests;
  • Assessing risks to investors, markets and financial stability – Enhance analytical input into ESMA’s operational work, including stress tests, impact assessments, product assessments and financial stability monitoring; and establish adequate data management and statistics capabilities;
  • Completing the single rulebook for EU financial markets – Complete technical standards and technical advice related to key legislative developments, e.g. Securitisation, Prospectus, MMF, EMIR Review; and maintain the existing Single Rulebook; and
  • Directly supervising specific financial entities (CRAs and TRs) – Intensify supervision to ensure compliance with the spirit of the regulation. A small increase in the number of entities to supervise, particularly TRs, is expected in 2018.

The commitments of the regulator are being set within the framework of a budget that Esma said is “expected” to be “€42,051,386 with a projected staff of 232.”

Jonathan Boyd
Editorial Director of Open Door Media Publishing Ltd, and Editor of InvestmentEurope. Jonathan has over two decades of media experience in Japan, Australia, Canada and the UK. Over the past 16 years he has been based in London writing about funds and investments . From editing the newsletter of the Swedish Chamber of Commerce in Japan in the 1990s he now focuses on Nordic markets for InvestmentEurope.

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