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Editorial

Legal market overview

Notwithstanding the country’s small size, and aided by an innovative and business-friendly regulator, Luxembourg’s economy remains among the most competitive and stable in the world, as underscored by the Global Competitiveness Report recently issued by the World Economic Forum, which ranks the country 20th worldwide. The investment funds and banking industries account for around one-third of the country’s GDP, with approximately 70% of the world’s Undertakings for Collective Investments in Transferable Securities (UCITS) registered there. Luxembourg has also successfully leveraged its position at the vanguard of the UCITS industry to establish itself as a prominent player on the alternative investment funds side. In this respect, the Grand Duchy became one of the first countries to transpose the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD) into domestic law and has also been pushing the envelope with regards to establishing new fund structures such as the recent establishment of the Reserved Alternative Investment Fund (RAIF) and the European Long-Term Investment Fund (ELTIF).

In addition to funds work, law firms in the market are regularly involved in major cross-border M&A deals, where mandates are frequently structured using a Luxembourg investment vehicle to facilitate the deal.

Independent domestic firms including Arendt & Medernach and Elvinger Hoss Prussen compete at the top of the rankings with international firms Allen & Overy Luxembourg, Clifford Chance and Linklaters and several Benelux firms – including Stibbe, Loyens & Loeff and NautaDutilh – which are prominent in numerous practice areas.

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Legal Developments in Luxembourg

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  • ESMA issues new updates to UCITS and AIFMD Q&As

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has issued fresh updates on October 5 to its Questions and Answers documents containing guidance on and interpretation of the EU’s Undertakings for Collective Investment in Transferable Securities (UCITS) and Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD) regimes. ESMA says the Q&A documents aim to promote common supervisory approaches and practices in the practical application of the various UCITS directives and the AIFMD through responses to questions posed by industry members and regulators themselves.
  • VAT in the GCC – Q&A updates from the UAE Ministry of Finance

    On 9 July the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Ministry of Finance (MOF) published an update of the Value Added Tax (VAT) FAQ section of its website.     
  • Foreign issuers on Luxembourg Stock Exchange must now provide LEI codes

    The Luxembourg Stock Exchange now requires all domestic and foreign issuers operating on the regulated market, the Bourse de Luxembourg, or its Euro MTF multilateral trading facility, to provide the exchange with their legal entity identifier codes. The exchange has called on foreign issuers to check the ongoing validity of their LEI codes with local operating units designated by different countries and to send them to the exchange by e-mail to bolide@bourse.lu .
  • New Tax Procedures Law in the UAE

    On 31 July 2017, the President of the United Arab Emirates (the “UAE ”) issued the new Tax Procedures Law (the “Law ”). This Law contributes to build the UAE’s tax system, to regulate the administration and collection of taxes and most importantly, to clarify the respective rights and obligations between the Federal Tax Authority (the “FTA ”) and the taxpayer.
  • Confirmation of the end of the VAT exemption regime for financial IGPs

    Following the Luxembourg case C-274/15, the series of cases relating to the scope of the cost-sharing VAT exemption also referred to as “Independent Group of Persons” (“IGP”) continues with the release today of three judgements by the Court of Justice of the EU (“CJUE”): Aviva (C-605/15), DNB Banka (C-326/15) and European Commission v Federal Republic of Germany (C-616/15).
  • Luxembourg law on the exploration and use of space resources entered into force

    The Luxembourg law on the exploration and use of space resources of 20 July 2017 entered into force on 2 August 2017 and placed Luxembourg among the most innovative space-oriented nations in the world.
  • UAE domestic VAT law released!

    On 27 August 2017, the United Arab Emirates (the " UAE ") published the text of its domestic Value Added Tax (the " VAT ") Law, shortly after releasing the text of its Excise Tax Law last week, and the Federal Tax Procedures Law earlier this month. It will be followed by implementing regulations, which will provide more detail on application of the VAT Law.
  • ICLG 4th edition - Corporate Immigration 2017

    As Luxembourg is gaining increasing success in international mobility and business immigration , the applicable legal framework has been recently adapted by introducing several new categories of residence permits in Luxembourg, including a residence permit for investors.
  • Posting of workers and its implications for posting companies - New law

    A revision of the Posting Directive became necessary after it proved that the Posting Directive contained numerous pitfalls in the past. In some cases it turned out that companies posting employees were only “letterbox companies” without any substance. In other cases, situations where concerned employees’ rights were being circumvented were unveiled.
  • CSSF provides guidance on PRIIPs KID for Luxembourg alternative funds

    In the latest update of its Frequently Asked Questions document on the legislation governing alternative investment fund managers, published on July 6, 2017, Luxembourg financial regulator CSSF has addressed issues raised by the introduction in January 2018 of the European Union’s regulation on Packaged Retail and Insurance-based Investment Products and its requirement for such products to provide investors with a Key Information Document.

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