The Bermuda Monetary Authority is advancing preparations to sign a cooperation agreement with Europe under the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD).
The AIFMD is due to be implemented across Europe by 22 July 2013. The Authority has been in discussions with the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), and is aiming to sign the co-operation agreement required for third country regulators under the Directive before the July deadline.
“Bermuda’s existing regulatory framework for investment funds already provides the foundation to support the level of cooperation ESMA is seeking,” says Jeremy Cox, chief executive of the Authority. “Therefore, we are in a good position to facilitate Bermuda-based funds and fund managers who want to conduct business in Europe once the AIFMD is implemented.”
Bermuda can satisfy the three core conditions that are most relevant to third countries under the AIFMD, namely that:
1. There is in place a cooperation agreement with the third country fund domicile and home member state;
2. Third countries (manager domicile or fund domicile) are not on the Financial Action Task Force list of non-cooperative jurisdictions;
3. Agreements for exchange of information for tax purposes are in place between European Union States and non-EU jurisdictions.
“We will be working on confirming details under the agreement in the coming weeks,” says Cox. “This means Bermuda can still offer significant benefits for new and existing funds and fund managers seeking access to Europe, while also servicing those looking to operate in non-EU markets.”
Cox adds that the Authority has also been actively engaged with the Bermuda Government and market practitioners in the jurisdiction to consider stakeholder input on the AIFMD.
“Bermuda is a sophisticated funds jurisdiction with considerable expertise and the professional services infrastructure to support fund business with global scope,” he says. “It is clear that there is a collective effort to ensure Bermuda is appropriately aligned with the AIFMD, so that our funds sector can continue to operate from this jurisdiction successfully.”