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Press releases and law firm thought leadership

This page is dedicated to keeping readers informed of the latest news and thought leadership articles from law firms across the globe.

If your firm wishes to publish press releases or articles, please contact Shehab Khurshid on +44 (0) 207 396 5689 or shehab.khurshid@legalease.co.uk

 

Legal Developments Worldwide

Articles contributed by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates

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Malta Opportunity: Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies

May 2018 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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The Future of Maltese Banks is Here

Talking of cryptocurrencies as an opportunity for the Maltese banking sector might sound outlandish, in the context of a highly-regulated banking industry in Malta. However if one follows the rapid developments in cryptocurrencies across the globe, it is clearly inevitable that many industries, including traditional banks, will have to adapt to this highly innovative evolution that is fast permeating many economic sectors.

In this article we explore how the Utility Settlement Coin ("USC"), a cryptocurrency currently being developed by some of the world's largest banks, is set to give the cryptocurrency market a new business angle.

The Cryptocurrency Race Is On! Comparing Leaders In DLT Regulation

April 2018 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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It seems like cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology are all anyone can talk about. Regulators have realised that disruptive technologies hold vast potential, but few have taken up the initiative to create a regulatory framework within which FinTech businesses can operate. Countries are classifying cryptocurrencies as assets, commodities and even as currencies ‚Äď there is no one view that prevails. This article will explore how jurisdictions at the forefront of DLT regulation are moving forward in this race among regulators.

Proposed Regulatory Framework for Virtual Currencies and DLT

April 2018 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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The Parliamentary Secretary for Financial Services, Digital Economy and Innovation, Hon. Silvio Schembri, unveiled a consultation

document on the establishment of the Malta Digital Innovation Authority ("MDIA" or  "Authority). The Maltese regulator is currently

working on three draft bills that shall set out a regulatory framework for the certification of Distributed Ledger Technology Platforms,

ICOs, Virtual Currencies, Virtual Currency Exchanges and related service providers. With the promulgation of these draft bills, Malta

would offer legal certainty in an area that is currently unregulated and establish itself as one of the top jurisdictions for businesses seeking

to utilise distributed ledger technology.

Malta opportunity: Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies

February 2018 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

More articles by this firm.

The future of Maltese banks is here

Talking of cryptocurrencies as an opportunity for the Maltese banking sector might sound outlandish, in the context of a highly-regulated banking industry in Malta. However if one follows the rapid developments in cryptocurrencies across the globe, it is clearly inevitable that many industries, including traditional banks, will have to adapt to this highly innovative evolution that is fast permeating many economic sectors.

In this article we explore how the Utility Settlement Coin ("USC"), a cryptocurrency currently being developed by some of the world's largest banks, is set to give the cryptocurrency market a new business angle.

Blockchain Technology Opportunities for the Maltese Insurance Industry

January 2018 - Insurance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Blockchain Technology presents a number of opportunities for various businesses, including insurance companies. There are various possibilities which Maltese insurance companies could explore, as we shall highlight below.

EU and Malta Securitisation Market

December 2017 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Following the US subprime crisis that began in 2007, the notion of securitisation has suffered from bad press that tainted its reputation. However, securitisation is still considered as an essential component to continued economic recovery and for well-functioning financial markets.

Crowdfunding - The Path towards a regulatory Framework

December 2017 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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1.        Recent developments in the market of Crowdfunding in Malta

 The importance and feasibility of crowdfunding platforms is increasing in stature and importance for current and future the entrepreneurs. Malta has recently acceded to the rising trend by creating its first crowdfunding platform, ZAAR, a reward-based crowdfunding platform who has recently been awarded with the first prize in its section at the National Enterprise Support Awards 2016 also as well as being one of the local projects that have represented Malta at the European Enterprise Promotion Awards 2016, held in Slovakia. Nonetheless start-ups based in Malta with global aspirations often rely on international platforms. An increase in interest has emerged amongst the art and culture community as well in social entrepreneurship projects. Crowdfunding in Malta is still at the early stages of development. Despite this, there are endless opportunities for local entrepreneurs and the local business community. Research has shown that through international crowdfunding platforms, monies have been raised for projects in the field of gaming consoles, apps and software as well as for artistic projects.  Testimony to this is a new game design studio in Malta, that launched its first game, Politicks, raised financing through the crowdfunding platform Indiegogo.


 

The ECB’s Fitness and Properness Test: The Assessment Process

September 2017 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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In May 2017, the European Central Bank ("ECB") published a list of guidelines which gave a compressive overview of the practices and procedures applied by it when assessing the suitability of members of the management bodies of Significant Institutions ("SIs") as well as trying to harmonize national rules of all Member States in relation to the fit and proper assessment. 

Malta: a new magnet for High Net Worth Individuals

April 2017 - Tax & Private Client. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Malta has hit headlines for its record economic performance during the last decade and has grown into a booming financial centre in the Euro-Mediterranean region.  Sunseeker interviews prominent Maltese lawyer Dr Jean-Philippe Chetcuti, managing partner of Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates, on the reasons for Malta's attractiveness to affluent international families.

Investing in Malta- A Property Almanac

March 2017 - Real Estate & Property. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Malta has long gained a reputation for a high standard of living with a Mediterranean flair. With the introduction of various programmes related to the attainment of citizenship or residency, many foreign investors have eyed the island as an ideal European solution for immigration purposes with vast potential for stable investment in real estate. In this article Dr Maria Chetcuti Cauchi presents an analysis of the real estate market and laws through 2015 and 2016, with a view of giving an exposition of the process for property acquisition and resale.

EU VAT on Yacht solutions

March 2017 - Transport. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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The yachting industry sails across a dynamic regulatory environment, increasingly leading to more paperwork, administration, checks and procedures.  In this context, and considering that yachts are generally a leisure escape, yacht owners are constantly looking for straight forward solutions that allow them to sail their yachts worry-free.  Malta has been at the forefront in providing such solutions and finding a balance between what are usually deemed two opposing needs: those of proper regulation and application of procedures on the one hand, and enjoyment of the yacht without unnecessary and unwarranted restrictions, on the other.   

NAIF - an AIFMD-Compliant Fund with quick access to the market

March 2017 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Since the advent of the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (‚ÄėAIFMD‚Äô), fund managers have been facing a double regulatory burden as a result of having both fund managers and funds subject to prudential regulation which led to overlapping and possibly inconsistent regulatory requirements affecting funds.

Malta Stock Exchange: European capital raising now easier for SMEs

March 2017 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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While larger enterprises often steal the limelight, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), very often being family businesses, make up the very backbone of most economies, with SMEs constituting the vast majority of companies within the EU. In Malta, 99.9% of Maltese companies are classified as SMEs, with 4.8% classified as small to medium enterprises and 95.1% classified as micro organisations.

Malta: A Hub for e-Commerce, Digital Games & Online Gambling in Europe

June 2015 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Whilst Malta‚Äôs 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 e-commerce and gaming operators to Malta. Indeed, to the gaming and e-commerce world, Malta represents more than that. 

Being a niche for ground breaking technological solutions, having reliable laws, providing fiscal advantages and a stable environment, Malta is one of the fastest growing information and communications technology markets in Europe quickly continuing its growth as a hub for e-commercedigital gaming and online gambling.

Core Maltese Legal Concepts for Banks and other Money Lenders

April 2015 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Over the years Malta has evolved from a traditional, debtor friendly civil law jurisdiction into an increasingly financier friendly jurisdiction that offer many of the flexibilities typically associated with common law jurisdictions. These developments have been spurred by (and have spurred) the growth of the aviation and maritime industries in Malta, as well as the country’s emergence as a reputable financial services centre. This article provides an overview of the core Maltese legal concepts which are of interest to banks and other financial institutions lending money in or from Malta.

Malta Emerges as a Stronger Fund Domicile After AIFMD

April 2015 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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It is fair to say that AIFMD was not very well received by the Maltese burgeoning industry when it was first announced in April 2009. The initial draft appeared to have been drafted hastily and did not take into account certain characteristics of the local regulatory regime (such as the availability of self-managed fund structures) leading many to speculate that the Directive could disrupt the growth of the Maltese funds industry.Another issue that arose during regulatory gestation of the directive was the requirement for full scope AIFMs to appoint a single depositary for each AIF it manages, in the jurisdiction where the AIF is domiciled; a requirement which, due to the, at the time, limited depositary infrastructure could also have dampened growth.

MALTA TAXATION FROM IMMOVABLE PROPERTY

April 2015 - Real Estate & Property. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Old Regime for Malta’s Taxation from Immovable property

Prior to 1 January 2015, in Malta, gains realized on the transfer of immovable property were taxed either at a final tax of 12% on transfer value or in certain instances tax was levied on the gain at the rate of 35%, or in the case of individuals at the applicable progressive tax rates.  The 2015 Malta budget however contains measures to replace these provisions, although the previous regime continues to apply for transfers of immovable property which were notified to the Commissioner for Revenue through a promise of sale or transfer notice by 17 November 2014. This is a somewhat contentious move in that a fixed tax on the consideration received on a transfer cannot be deemed to be a tax on capital gains but is more akin to a duty.

The legislation to enact these proposals has still not been approved by the Maltese Parliament, however the proposals are as follows:

Introduction to Energy Law in Malta

March 2015 - Projects, Energy & Natural Resources . Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Introduction to Energy Law in Malta

The recent part privatization of Enemalta Corporation was accompanied by a number of significant legislative developments in the field of energy law in Malta.

The primary legislative instrument supporting these changes was Act XXXIV of 2014, Chapter 536 of the laws of Malta which inter alia: made provision for the transfer of all the assets, rights, liabilities and obligations of Enemalta Corporation to Enemalta p.l.c.; regulated further the functions of distribution system operators; repealed Chapter 272, which was the Enemalta Act and also made provision for other matters deemed to be ancillary thereto or connected therewith. This article provides an overview of the Maltese energy law regime as it stands following these changes.

Malta's New Tax Incentives targeting Valuable Human Power

June 2013 - Tax & Private Client. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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An Eye for Innovation, Creativity & Excellence

‚Ė† Dr Jean Philippe Chetcuti, Malta

On 27th April 2012, Malta Enterprise, the University of Malta and the Malta Council for Science and Technology in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance, the Economy and Investment launched the Digital Gaming Strategy for Malta to facilitate the growth of this lucrative niche as an offshoot of the flourishing ICT industry.

 

 

Malta's New Tax Incentives targeting Valuable Human Power

June 2013 - Tax & Private Client. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

More articles by this firm.

An Eye for Innovation, Creativity & Excellence

‚Ė† Dr Jean Philippe Chetcuti, Malta

On 27th April 2012, Malta Enterprise, the University of Malta and the Malta Council for Science and Technology in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance, the Economy and Investment launched the Digital Gaming Strategy for Malta to facilitate the growth of this lucrative niche as an offshoot of the flourishing ICT industry.

 

 

I-Gaming in Malta: Reliable Laws, Fiscal Advantages, Stable Environment

June 2013 - Corporate & Commercial. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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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.

 

Maltese Depositary Liability Post-AIFMD

May 2013 - Corporate & Commercial. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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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. 

An Analysis of the Definition of Investment Advice under Maltese Law

May 2013 - Corporate & Commercial. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Investment Advice: The Maltese Perspective

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.

Investment Advice is defined in the First Schedule to the Investment Services Act (ISA) in the following manner:

‚ÄėGiving, offering or agreeing to give, to persons in their capacity as investors or potential investors or as agent for an investor or potential investor, a personal recommendation in respect of one or more transactions relating to one or more instruments.'

A key element of the definition[2] is a ‚Äėpersonal recommendation', which is defined as a suggestion which is portrayed as suitable for the person to whom it is addressed, or which is based on a consideration of the circumstances of the recipient. Maltese law also provides for an exception to the effect that a recommendation issued exclusively through distribution channels or to the public does not constitute a personal recommendation.

Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD) Implementation Takes Shape in Malta

May 2013 - Corporate & Commercial. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Introduction

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.  

Fund Managers Relocate to Malta

October 2012 - Finance. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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Introduction: the Maltese Funds Industry

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.

Malta emerges as a Forex domicile

September 2012 - Tax & Private Client. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

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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.

Malta emerges as a Forex domicile

September 2012 - Tax & Private Client. Legal Developments by Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates.

More articles by this firm.

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.