In its recently published programme for 2014, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has announced its planned measures in relation to corporate governance, the Prospectus Directive and the Transparency Directive during the year.
Regarding corporate governance, ESMA states that it will continue to expand its activities in this area, particularly as the Commission is expected to present new proposals in the area of corporate governance by the end of 2013, following on from its Action Plan on Company Law and Corporate Governance (published in December 2012). ESMA will "embark on relevant new workflows" which may arise as a result of this.
In terms of the Prospectus Directive, ESMA states that it will continue the development of Technical Standards contemplated by the Amended Prospectus Directive, Omnibus I Directive and the expected Omnibus II Directive in addition to providing guidance and supervisory briefings. ESMA's focus will be on improving the co-ordination and harmonisation of how the prospectus directive is applied across Europe. ESMA also reports that an IT Register to deal with notification of approved prospectuses, supplements and passports concerning pan-European offerings and admissions to trading is expected to go live at the beginning of 2014. ESMA will display all approved prospectuses and supplements in Europe within the latest 12 months on its website.
In terms of the Transparency Directive, ESMA states that the proposed revision of this is expected to be finalised during 2014 and it expects to develop technical standards and advice to the Commission on delegated acts in accordance with the Directive's provisions.