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AIMA urges progress on passport for third country jurisdictions

Date: Tuesday, August 4, 2015
Author: AIMA Press Release

London – 31 July 2015: The Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA), the global hedge fund industry association, welcomed the recommendation to extend a pan-European marketing ‘passport’ to alternative investment fund managers (AIFMs) and alternative investment funds (AIFs) in several non-EU jurisdictions – but urged faster progress on making the passport available to AIFMs and AIFs in other non-EU countries.


The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has recommended that the passport under the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD) be extended to AIFMs in Switzerland (upon the adoption of certain pending legislation), Jersey and Guernsey and EU AIFMs which manage AIFs established in those jurisdictions. This means that the European Commission may now proceed with legislation to put the extension into effect for AIFMs and AIFs from these countries. Until now, only EU-based firms managing funds established in the EU have been able to use the passport.


AIMA said it supported the granting of the passport to Switzerland, Jersey and Guernsey. But AIMA said the passport should be granted to all the main asset management and fund jurisdictions.


AIMA said it welcomed ESMA’s intention to assess other non-EU countries including the Cayman Islands, Canada and Australia, and also welcomed ESMA’s willingness to refine its assessment of the US, Hong Kong and Singapore, which have not yet received a positive recommendation that the passport will be extended to them. But AIMA urged ESMA to complete this process as soon as possible and in particular questioned the open-ended nature of the process relating to the US. 


AIMA CEO Jack Inglis said: “Managers outside the EU should be able to take advantage of the passport, especially if they will get authorised and be supervised by EU regulators, just as those inside the EU are already able to. While we would have wished ESMA to adopt a more streamlined and speedier assessment of all important jurisdictions as there is no need for an equivalence assessment in the AIFMD, we welcome the clarity on which jurisdictions are to be assessed in the coming months.”


Jack Inglis added: “The passport is just one of a set of marketing options for hedge fund management firms. We look forward to engaging further with ESMA on the continuation of the national private placement regimes which we feel should be allowed to run alongside passports indefinitely. In any case, we believe that the country-by-country approach ESMA has chosen should ensure the continuation of such regimes absent a positive decision on the passport in relation to an individual jurisdiction. Private placement regimes are extremely useful in making it possible for European pension funds and other European investors to access non-EU funds managed by non-EU firms.”


- Ends –


For media enquiries, please contact:

Dominic Tonner, Director, Global Head of Communications, AIMA

Tel: +44 20 7822 8380

Email: dtonner@aima.org


About AIMA

The Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA) is the global hedge fund industry association, with over 1,500 corporate members (and over 8,000 individual contacts) in over 50 countries. Members include hedge fund managers, fund of hedge funds managers, prime brokers, legal and accounting firms, investors, fund administrators and independent fund directors. AIMA’s manager members collectively manage more than $1.5 trillion in assets. All AIMA members benefit from AIMA’s active influence in policy development, its leadership in industry initiatives, including education and sound practice manuals, and its excellent reputation with regulators worldwide. AIMA is a dynamic organisation that reflects its members’ interests and provides them with a vibrant global network. AIMA is committed to developing industry skills and education standards and is a co-founder of the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst designation (CAIA) – the industry’s first and only specialised educational standard for alternative investment specialists. For further information, please visit AIMA’s website, www.aima.org.