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Articles contributed by Binder Grösswang Attorneys-at-Law
On December 8, 2011 an amendment of the Foreign Trade Act 2011 (Außenwirtschaftsgesetz 2011, until then Außenhandelsgesetz 2011, “FTA 2011”) entered into force imposing a substantial new barrier on foreign investors when acquiring shares in Austrian companies that operate in areas of public security and order. This amendment came as a surprise as part of the Budget Consolidation Act 2012 (Budgetbegleitgesetz 2012), governing different topics. The key points of the new barrier for foreign investors are the following:
Together with adopting the 2011 budget the Austrian legislator amended a variety of laws and regulations. One amendment concerns the penalties for not disclosing the annual financial statements with the companies' register (Firmenbuch), which are considerably tightened. Until 28 February 2011,so far missed disclosures may be made without triggering the new penalties…
Since September 9, 2009 a new law is in force in Austria that allows for a wider exchange of information than before if a double tax treaty, an ECDirective or international agreements provide for it. Since September 18, 2009 Austria is no longer on the OECD's Grey List of countries that are considered to not fully implement OECD tax standards.
On 13 October 2008 the Austrian government announced coordinated stability measures for the financial markets following the joint declaration on the concerted European action plan of the euro area countries last Sunday. The stability measures approved on Monday by the Austrian cabinet (Ministerrat) aim at protecting banks and insurance companies swiftly and decisively from the possibly serious effects of the international financial crisis.
On September 18, 2008 the US Securities and Exchange Commission took temporary emergency action to prohibit short selling in 799 financial companies to protect the integrity and quality of the securities market and strengthen investor confidence. Other securities regulators around the world, such as UK’s FSA, Germany’s BaFin and Spain’s CNMV took similar action during the following days.
On 13 October 2008 the Austrian government announced coordinated stability measures for the financial markets following the joint declaration on the concerted European action plan of the euro area countries on 12 October 2008.
Der Standard, Wirtschaft & Recht, Ausgabe vom 19.11.2008