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Sanctions Update: Further measures taken by UK, EU and US in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, including the UK's new Economic Crime (Transparency and Enforcement) Act

On 15 March 2022, the UK's new Economic Crime (Transparency and Enforcement) Act (the "ECA") received Royal Assent. The legislation contains a number of important provisions, including the introduction of a new 'Register of Overseas Entities' and reforms to unexplained wealth orders.

Qualifying asset holding company regime and infrastructure investors

In a bid to bolster its attractiveness to the asset management sector, the UK is introducing a new tax efficient vehicle: the qualifying asset holding company (“QAHC”, pronounced “quack”). The elective regime will be introduced in April 2022 and, by providing a simplified basis of taxation and a host of generous tax benefits, should allow the UK to compete with Luxembourg and other competitor jurisdictions.

Size matters – guidance on climate-related disclosures for large companies and LLPs

At the end of last month BEIS published non-binding guidance for large companies and LLPs on the obligation to make climate-related financial disclosures in their annual accounts. In-scope entities will have to prepare for the new obligations and ensure that their governance structure and financial planning and reporting processes are fit for purpose. 

Radical prospectus reform: A step closer

Earlier this week HM Treasury published the outcome of its UK Prospectus Regime Review. As proposed in the July 2021 consultation paper, the government will be replacing the current prospectus regime it inherited from the EU Prospectus Regulation. The main aims of the reform are simplifying regulation in this area; making it more agile and dynamic; facilitating wider participation in the ownership of public companies and improving the quality of information received by investors.

The Environment Act 2021 and the real estate sector

The Environmental Protection Act 1990 was a landmark piece of legislation for the real estate sector, establishing legal responsibility for contamination and pollution control for land, air and water, and also regulating waste disposal and statutory nuisances. Our understanding of the threat posed by contamination and climate change has increased significantly in the thirty years that followed, and the long-awaited new Environment Act was finally put onto the statute books in 2021. When it is fully operational, what might the new legislation mean for the UK's real estate industry?

Scanning the Real Estate horizon: Out with the old, in with the new

In this briefing we look at 12 of the changes to law and practice that are likely to impact on the real estate sector in 2022.

Financial Services Regulation 2022 - New Year briefing

The Alpha and Omega of Regulation (via Omicron)?

Having said goodbye to another year of headlines dominated by COVID-19, with a Christmas and New Year overshadowed by a mixture of good and bad news about Omicron, it's not yet clear what degree of optimism about the year ahead is justified. At the very least, it is to be hoped that the World Health Organisation will not find it has to exhaust the Greek alphabet in naming any future new variants of concern.

Climate-related financial disclosures: New rules for standard listed issuers

On 17 December 2021, the FCA published two policy statements confirming final rules and guidance to promote improved climate-related financial disclosures. Such measures are aimed at helping to inform market pricing and support business decision-making, with the ultimate goal of assisting consumers in making more informed investment decisions.

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