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Legal market overview
As Europe continues to be buffeted by the after-effects of sovereign debt crises and increased financial services regulatory scrutiny, Malta is comparatively tranquil. Its efforts to create a thriving financial services industry continue to yield results, and the struggles of jurisdictions such as Cyprus are encouraging businesses to turn to Malta as a comparatively secure, tax-friendly system. In addition, the market is parlaying its established track record as a go-to jurisdiction for ship registration into establishing itself as a hub for aircraft registration, particularly in the private jet sector. The new Aviation section reflects this development. Investment funds practices are covered in the Banking, finance and capital markets section.
Law firms with full-service offerings have been the biggest beneficiaries of this growth in work. Indeed, the nature of the marketplace is such that generalist practices continue to dominate. Ganado Advocates, GVTH Advocates, Mamo TCV Advocates, Camilleri Preziosi and Fenech & Fenech Advocates are among the standout firms providing clients with full-service capabilities. The maritime and aviation sectors are two areas where niche practices can thrive, with Dingli & Dingli Law Firm being particularly noteworthy in the former. Although law firm mergers and lateral moves are rare in this stable market, Hugh Peralta & Associates merged with Iuris Malta Advocates in 2013.
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As the first jurisdiction in the European Union (EU) that introduced regulated remote gaming, with an average of a hundred new applications a year and being the largest EU i-gaming jurisdiction, Malta's success in the i-gaming arena is undisputed. That said, whilst Malta's history, sun and sea might be a good reason for tourists to come to the island, they are surely complementary but not the sole reasons to attract prospective i-gaming operators. Indeed, to the i-gaming world, Malta represents more than that.
With the transposition of the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (" AIFMD ") in the offing, analysis on the transformation and legal implications of such on the role of the Depositary as a key and core service provider to Alternative Investment Funds (" AIFs ") is significant, given the central function and responsibility this position was conferred within this industry.
Investment advice a kind of investment service which may be provided by an investment service provider licensed by the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) under the Investment Services Act (ISA). With the exception of a category 4 licence holder.
The Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive ("AIFMD" or "the Directive") has been in discussion since its announcement in April of 2009, but the detail of its implementation has, until fairly recently, been somewhat unclear. However, following the issuing of a number of consultation documents and other instruments there is now far more clarity on the subject. This article will seek to provide an overview of the various instruments by means of which the Directive is to be introduced into Maltese law and will also briefly touch upon the effect that these changes will have on the structure of Maltese funds legislation.
Malta has experienced consistent growth in the funds sector since the jurisdiction's accession to the EU in 2004, such that today it is legitimate to consider the country as a mature, well-established domicile rather than an emerging one. In fact the jurisdiction now hosts around 500 funds pursuing a variety of strategies, as well as a complete ecosystem of support services providers such as fund administrators, law firms and audit firms. The sector has now evolved to the point where managers are not just using the country as a domicile for funds, but are also increasingly looking at the jurisdiction as a domicile for their fund management operations.
Starting circa the beginning of 2010, Malta has seen increasing interest in the Forex sector, an industry which only a handful of years ago was practically non-existent. Different kinds of forex operators, ranging from introducing brokers all the way through to fund managers focusing on forex as an asset class and fully fledged market makers have chosen Malta as their European base of operations. Various authorisations have already been issued by the Malta Financial Services Authority (The MFSA) to such operations, and with many other applications pending before the regulator, additional growth appears to be a certainty in the forthcoming months. In fact, there are already clear clues that forex is set to become, alongside stalwarts such as hedge funds and insurance captives, an important pillar of the Maltese financial services offering.
Recent amendments to the Financial Institutions Act (Chapter 376 of the Laws of Malta) (the “Act”) have effectively brought the regulation of EMIs in Malta.
Introduction – Malta’s Taxable Base Persons ordinarily resident and domiciled in Malta (including companies incorporated in Malta) are chargeable to tax in Malta on a worldwide basis in terms of the Income Tax Act.
Studio Legale Villata, Degli Esposti, Perfetti e Associati is pleased to announce the forthcoming publication of the sixth edition of Professor Villata's monograph entitled " Pubblici Servizi. Discussioni e Problemi " (Public Services. Issues and Debates) and issued by the law publishing house Giuffrè. The volume consists of an in-depth analysis of the much-discussed subject of public services and provides a remarkable intake on the matter from an exceedingly knowledgeable scholar, in light of recent developments in legislation and jurisprudence.
Budidjaja & Associates becomes the Indonesian law firm member of TAGLaw, an international alliance of independent law firms
AstapovLawyers has been recognized TOP-3 band in corporate/M&A and tax in Ukraine according to the latest survey 2014 by KyivPost, a well-known English speaking edition. The survey findings are based on a peer review conducted by the Kyiv Post in August of 90 law firms.
The Administrative Court of Hamburg decided on 27 August 2014 that Uber, a provider for a smartphone-app for on-demand transportation services, may continue providing its services in Hamburg. With its decision, the Administrative Court ordered the suspensive effect of the objection against the prohibition order of the city of Hamburg. The decision of the Hamburg authorities were formally unlawful as the traffic authorities were not the responsible authority and the prohibition order could not be based on the Passenger Transportation Act (Personenbeförderungsgesetz).
The Companies (Guernsey) Law, 2008 (" Companies Law ") provides for companies, protected cell companies (" PCCs "), incorporated cell companies (" ICCs ") and cells of PCCs and ICCs to be placed into administration and for an administrator to be appointed to manage that entity's affairs whilst the administration order remains in force.- Ogier
A company incorporated and existing in one jurisdiction may consider it desirable to continue as a company existing elsewhere for a variety of reasons including, for example: to be in a time zone closer to investors; to conduct its affairs in a manner more familiar to its stakeholders; to benefit from a more modern and/or flexible statutory or regulatory environment and/or a more appropriate tax framework.- Ogier
Kim & Chang has been named as the "Best Law Firm for Asset Management" from AsianInvestor Korea Fund Awards 2014 , hosted by AsianInvestor affiliated with Haymarket Media Ltd, a global media company. It is the fourth consecutive year that the firm has been honored for this award.
Kim & Chang has been selected for the "Legal Innovation in Real Estate Finance" award for providing exceptional legal advice in connection with the case involving KHFC's issuance of two different types of covered bonds in the first-ever Financial Times (FT) Asia-Pacific Innovative Lawyers Awards 2014 .
Kim & Chang has been recognized as one of the world's top 150 law firms in the Who's Who Legal 100 (2014 edition, 3rd edition) , published by Who's Who Legal that is an international publication affiliated with London-based publishing group, Law Business Research. Kim & Chang has been the only law firm in Korea to be included in the list for three consecutive years.