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Press Release

Friday 19 October 2012

IMA WELCOMES SECOND EU RETAIL FUND PASSPORT AND WARNS AGAINST IMPOSING ADDITIONAL CONSTRAINTS ON UCITS

In its response to the European Commission's wide-ranging UCITS VI* consultation, the Investment Management Association (IMA) warns against restricting UCITS investment strategies or imposing yet more requirements on an already highly-regulated product.

The IMA strongly supports a second passport for retail funds that invest in alternative assets - such as real estate, venture capital and commodities - or that are closed-ended or have limited redemption. And it highlights the need for these to be a separate brand from UCITS.

Julie Patterson, IMA Director of Authorised Funds and Tax, said:

“Different interpretations by national regulators of existing UCITS requirements have led to certain strategies being authorised in some EU Member States but not others. Modern investment strategies should not be prohibited in UCITS as they enable those with modest sums to achieve their savings goals in a cost-efficient manner, which would otherwise be available only via unregulated products. But there should be consistency across the EU, which ESMA is now best-placed to ensure.

“To aid consistency, we would welcome ESMA's extensive guidelines being converted into mandatory 'Regulatory Technical Standards'. Such detailed technical rules should not be authored by the Commission as the EU process does not allow for such acts or measures to be readily adapted to reflect market developments or evolving regulatory concerns - counter to the goal of consistency.

“The UCITS governance framework has proven strong and successful, even during the crisis. The UCITS V** proposals will further enhance that framework and there is no case for imposing yet further requirements drawn from the AIFMD.

“We very much welcome the proposal for a second EU retail fund passport. Such funds already exist in the UK and in other Member States. They should, though, be a separate brand, so that they are distinguishable for investors and regulators alike, both within the EU and globally.”

-ENDS-

* The UCITS VI proposals cover product rules, liquidity management, depository, money market funds and long-term investments.

** The UCITS V proposals cover depositary duties and liability, remuneration policy of the management company and national sanctioning regimes.

For further information please contact:

Mona Patel, Head of Communications
mpatel@investmentuk.org
020 7831 0898 or 07834 089332

Navdeep Sidhu, Press Officer
nsidhu@investmentuk.org
020 7831 0898 or 07843 517 618

Christina Bridge, Press Assistant
cbridge@investmentuk.org
020 7831 0898

About the Investment Management Association

  • The IMA is the trade body for the UK's £4.2 trillion asset management industry (retail and institutional) which is one of the world's leading investment management centres.
  • Our role is to represent the interests of the asset management industry to government and regulators both in the UK and internationally.
  • The money our members manage is in a wide variety of investment vehicles including authorised investment funds, pension funds and stocks and shares ISAs.

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