Authorisation, Registration and Supervision of Administrators

 

Role of Competent Authorities

Obligation to Cooperate

1.   Where Member States have chosen, in accordance with Article 42, to lay down criminal sanctions for infringements of the provisions referred to in that Article, they shall ensure that appropriate measures are in place so that competent authorities have all the necessary powers to liaise with judicial authorities within their jurisdiction to receive specific information relating to criminal investigations or proceedings commenced for possible infringements of this Regulation. Those competent authorities shall provide that information to other competent authorities and ESMA, in order to fulfil their obligation to cooperate with each other and ESMA for the purposes of this Regulation.

2.   Competent authorities shall provide assistance to competent authorities of other Member States. In particular, they shall exchange information and cooperate in any investigation or supervisory activities. Competent authorities may also cooperate with competent authorities of other Member States with respect to facilitating the recovery of pecuniary sanctions.

 

Publication of Decisions

1.   Subject to paragraph 2, a competent authority shall publish any decision imposing an administrative sanction or other administrative measure in relation to infringements of this Regulation on its official website immediately after the person subject to that decision has been informed of that decision. Such publication shall include at least information on the type and nature of the infringement and the identity of the persons subject to the decision.

The first subparagraph does not apply to decisions imposing measures that are of an investigatory nature.

2.   Where a competent authority considers that the publication of the identity of the legal person or of the personal data of a natural person, would be disproportionate following a case-by-case assessment conducted on the proportionality of the publication of such data, or where such publication would jeopardise the stability of financial markets or an on-going investigation, it shall do any of the following:

(a) defer publication of the decision until such time as the reasons for that deferral cease to exist;

(b) publish the decision on an anonymous basis in accordance with national law where such anonymous publication ensures an effective protection of the personal data concerned;

(c) not publish the decision at all in the event that the competent authority is of the opinion that publication in accordance with point (a) or (b) will be insufficient to ensure:

(i) that the stability of financial markets is not jeopardised; or

(ii) the proportionality of the publication of such decisions with regard to measures which are deemed to be of a minor nature.

Where a competent authority decides to publish a decision on an anonymous basis as referred to in point (b) of the first subparagraph, it may postpone the publication of the relevant data for a reasonable period of time where it is foreseeable that the reasons for anonymous publication shall cease to exist during that period.

3.   Where the decision is subject to an appeal before a national judicial, administrative or other authority, the competent authority shall also publish, immediately, on its official website such information and any subsequent information on the outcome of such appeal. Any decision annulling a previous decision to impose a sanction or a measure shall also be published.

4.   The competent authority shall ensure that any decision that is published in accordance with this Article shall remain accessible on its official website for a period of at least five years after its publication. Personal data contained in the publication shall only be kept on the official website of the competent authority for the period which is necessary in accordance with the applicable data protection rules.

5.   Member States shall annually provide ESMA with aggregated information regarding all administrative sanctions and other administrative measures imposed pursuant to Article 42. That obligation does not apply to measures of an investigatory nature. ESMA shall publish that information in an annual report.

Where Member States have chosen, in accordance with Article 42, to lay down criminal sanctions for infringements of the provisions referred to in that Article, their competent authorities shall annually provide ESMA with anonymised and aggregated data regarding all criminal investigations undertaken and criminal sanctions imposed. ESMA shall publish data on criminal sanctions imposed in an annual report.

 

Colleges

1.   Within 30 working days from the inclusion of a benchmark referred to in points (a) and (c) of Article 20(1) in the list of critical benchmarks, with the exception of benchmarks where the majority of contributors are non-supervised entities, the competent authority shall establish a college.

2.   The college shall comprise the competent authority of the administrator, ESMA, and the competent authorities of supervised contributors.

3.   Competent authorities of other Member States shall have the right to be members of the college where, if the critical benchmark in question were to cease to be provided, it would have a significant adverse impact on the market integrity, financial stability, consumers, real economy, or financing of households and businesses of those Member States.

Where a competent authority intends to become a member of a college, it shall submit a request to the competent authority of the administrator containing evidence that the requirements of the first subparagraph of this paragraph are fulfilled. The relevant competent authority of the administrator shall consider the request and notify the requesting authority within 20 working days of receipt of the request whether or not it considers those requirements to be fulfilled. Where it considers those requirements not to be fulfilled, the requesting authority may refer the matter to ESMA in accordance with paragraph 9.

4.   ESMA shall contribute to promoting and monitoring the efficient, effective and consistent functioning of colleges referred to in this Article in accordance with Article 21 of Regulation (EU) No 1095/2010. To that end, ESMA shall participate as appropriate and shall be considered to be a competent authority for that purpose.

Where ESMA acts in accordance with Article 17(6) of Regulation (EU) No 1095/2010 regarding a critical benchmark, it shall ensure appropriate exchange of information and cooperation with the other members of the college.

5.   The competent authority of an administrator shall chair the meetings of the college, coordinate the actions of the college and ensure efficient exchange of information among members of the college.

Where an administrator provides more than one critical benchmark, the competent authority of that administrator may establish a single college in respect of all the benchmarks provided by that administrator.

6.   The competent authority of an administrator shall establish written arrangements within the framework of the college regarding the following matters:

(a) the information to be exchanged between competent authorities;

(b) the decision-making process between the competent authorities and the time frame within which each decision has to be taken;

(c) the cases in which the competent authorities must consult each other;

(d) the cooperation to be provided under Article 23(7) and (8).

7.   The competent authority of an administrator shall give due consideration to any advice provided by ESMA concerning the written arrangements under paragraph 6 before agreeing their final text. The written arrangements shall be set out in a single document containing full reasons for any significant deviation from the advice of ESMA. The competent authority of the administrator shall transmit the written arrangements to the members of the college and to ESMA.

8.   Before taking any measures referred to in Article 23(6), (7) and (9), and Articles 34, 35 and 42, the competent authority of an administrator shall consult the members of the college. The members of the college shall do everything reasonable within their power to reach an agreement within the time frame specified in the written arrangements referred to in paragraph 6 of this Article.

Any decision of the competent authority of the administrator to take such measures shall take into account the impact on the other Member States concerned, in particular the potential impact on the stability of their financial systems.

With regard to the decision to withdraw the authorisation or registration of an administrator in accordance with Article 35, whenever the cessation of a benchmark would result in a force majeure event, frustrate or otherwise breach the terms of any financial contract or financial instrument, or the rules of any investment fund, which references that benchmark in the Union, within the meaning specified by the Commission in any delegated act adopted pursuant to Article 51(6), the competent authorities within the college shall consider whether to adopt measures to mitigate the effects referred to in this paragraph, including:

(a) a change to the code of conduct referred to in Article 15, the methodology or other rules of the benchmark;

(b) a transitional period, during which the procedures envisaged under Article 28(2) shall apply.

9.   In the absence of agreement between the members of a college, competent authorities may refer to ESMA any of the following situations:

(a) where a competent authority has not communicated essential information;

(b) where, following a request made under paragraph 3, the competent authority of the administrator has notified the requesting authority that the requirements of that paragraph are not fulfilled or where it has not acted upon such request within a reasonable time;

(c) where the competent authorities have failed to reach an agreement on the matters set out in paragraph 6;

(d) where there is a disagreement concerning the measures to be taken in accordance with Articles 34, 35 and 42;

(e) where there is a disagreement concerning the measures to be taken in accordance with Article 23(6);

(f) where there is a disagreement concerning the measures to be taken in accordance with the third subparagraph of paragraph 8 of this Article.

10.   In the situations referred to in points (a), (b), (c), (d) and (f) of paragraph 9, if the issue is not settled within 30 days after referral to ESMA, the competent authority of an administrator shall take the final decision and provide a detailed explanation of its decision in writing to the competent authorities referred to in that paragraph and to ESMA.

The period of time referred to in point (a) of Article 34(6) shall be suspended from the date of referral to ESMA until such time as a decision is taken in accordance with the first subparagraph of this paragraph.

Where ESMA considers that the competent authority of the administrator has taken any measures referred to in paragraph 8 of this Article which may not be in conformity with Union law it shall act in accordance with Article 17 of Regulation (EU) No 1095/2010.

11.   In the situation referred to in point (e) of paragraph 9 of this Article, and without prejudice to Article 258 TFEU, ESMA may act in accordance with the powers conferred on it under Article 19 of Regulation (EU) No 1095/2010.

The power of the competent authority of an administrator under Article 23(6) may be exercised until such time as ESMA publishes its decision.

 

Cooperation with ESMA

1.   The competent authorities shall cooperate with ESMA for the purposes of this Regulation, in accordance with Regulation (EU) No 1095/2010.

2.   The competent authorities shall, without delay, provide ESMA with all information necessary to carry out its duties, in accordance with Article 35 of Regulation (EU) No 1095/2010.

3.   ESMA shall develop draft implementing technical standards to determine the procedures and forms for exchange of information as referred to in paragraph 2.

ESMA shall submit the draft implementing technical standards referred to in the first subparagraph to the Commission by 1 April 2017.

Power is conferred to the Commission to adopt the implementing technical standards referred to in the first subparagraph in accordance with Article 15 of Regulation (EU) No 1095/2010.

 

Professional Secrecy

1.   Any confidential information received, exchanged or transmitted pursuant to this Regulation shall be subject to the conditions of professional secrecy laid down in paragraph 2.

2.   The obligation of professional secrecy applies to all persons who work or who have worked for the competent authority or for any authority or market undertaking or natural or legal person to whom the competent authority has delegated its powers, including auditors and experts contracted by the competent authority.

3.   Information covered by professional secrecy may not be disclosed to any other person or authority except by virtue of provisions laid down by Union or national law.

4.   All information exchanged between the competent authorities under this Regulation that concerns business or operational conditions and other economic or personal affairs shall be considered confidential and shall be subject to the requirements of professional secrecy, except where the competent authority states at the time of communication that such information may be disclosed or where such disclosure is necessary for legal proceedings.

 

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