The UK will not be taking action to incorporate into UK law the reporting obligation of the EU’s Securities Financing Transactions Regulation for non-financial counterparties (NFCs), which is due to apply in the EU from January 2021. Given that systemically important NFC trading activity will be captured sufficiently through the other reporting obligations that are due to apply to financial counterparties, it is appropriate for the UK not to impose this further obligation on UK firms.
The Government is committed to regulation that supports and enhances the functioning of UK capital markets. It will therefore consider the future approach to the UK’s settlement discipline framework, given the importance of ensuring that regulation facilitates the settlement of market transactions in a timely manner while sustaining market liquidity and efficiency. As such, the UK will not be implementing the EU’s new settlement discipline regime, set out in the Central Securities Depositories Regulation, which is due to apply in February 2021. UK firms should instead continue to apply the existing industry-led framework. Any future legislative changes will be developed through dialogue with the financial services industry, and sufficient time will be provided to prepare for the implementation of any new future regime.
In addition to these measures set out above, the UK’s finance ministry will continue to maintain a global outlook on regulatory best practices, regardless of where those practices come from. “This approach will continue to be guided by a commitment to maintaining high standards and achieving the same or better prudential outcomes in the way that works best for the UK,” according to a statement.
HM Treasury plans to set out further detail on upcoming legislation in due course, which will include:
- Amendments to the Benchmarks Regulation to ensure continued market access to third country benchmarks until end-2025. HM Treasury will publish a policy statement in July 2020;
- Amendments to the Market Abuse Regulation to confirm and clarify that both issuers and those acting on their behalf must maintain their own insider lists and to change the timeline issuers have to comply with when disclosing certain transaction undertaken by their senior managers (‘Persons Discharging Managerial Responsibilities’);
- Legislation to improve the functioning of the PRIIPs regime in the UK and address potential risks of consumer harm in response to industry and regulator feedback. HMT will publish a policy statement July 2020; and
- Legislation to complete the implementation of the European Market Infrastructure Regulation (REFIT) to improve trade repository data and ensure that smaller firms are able to access clearing on fair and reasonable terms.