We set out below a reminder of certain upcoming deadlines which may be relevant for financial service providers including investment funds and fund management companies:
The Corporate Governance Code for Collective Investment Schemes and Management Companies (the “Code”) introduced certain requirements which should be reviewed and monitored on an annual basis to ensure ongoing compliance with the Code. For example, a review of the overall performance of the Board and that of the individual directors should be conducted on an annual basis. The Code became effective on 1 January 2012 with a twelve month transitional period. Accordingly, it will be necessary for Boards to undertake a review to ensure ongoing compliance with the Code, up to 31 December 2013 (in respect of this year).
UCITS Business Plan
UCITS management companies and self-managed investment companies should, where relevant in accordance with the provisions of the relevant business plan, obtain annual confirmation from service providers and other relevant persons regarding compliance with the terms of the business plan.
Fitness & Probity Standards
The Central Bank has introduced an Annual PCF (Pre-Approval Controlled Function) Confirmation Return which is an annual confirmation required from each regulated financial service provider in respect of all PCF holders within the firm confirming that they are compliant with the Fitness and Probity Standards. The Annual PCF Confirmation Return must be submitted through the Central Bank’s online reporting system (ONR). For the ‘Investment Firms/Funds/Fund Service Providers’ category, the reporting date is 31 December 2013, with a filing date of 28 February 2014.
Collective investment schemes and management companies should ensure that they have complied with AML requirements on an annual basis - particular account should be taken of the requirement to offer training to Boards of Directors on the law relating to AML and counter terrorist financing.
All UCITS funds should ensure that an updated KIID be made available to investors and a copy filed with the Central Bank by 19 February 2014. The European Communities (Undertakings for Collective Investment in Transferable Securities) Regulations 2011 provide that a UCITS is required to keep the essential elements of its key investor information document (“KIID”) up to date. Further, Commission Regulation (EU) No 583/2010 provides that a KIID, with duly revised presentation of past performance of the UCITS, must be made available no later than 35 business days after 31 December each year. Accordingly, all UCITS should ensure that a KIID with revised past performance information be made available to investors, and a copy filed with the Central Bank, within this timeframe (which is, by 19 February 2014).
The Central Bank has advised that 21 February 2014 is the latest date for receipt of applications for authorisation as AIFM including internally managed AIFs. For those applicants whose assets under management are below the thresholds set out in Regulation 4 of the European Union (Alternative Investment Fund Managers) Regulation 2013, applications to act as Registered AIFM should also be received by 21 February 2014.