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New ESMA supervisory briefing and ESA clarifications on the ever-changing SFDR regime

On 31 May 2022, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) published a supervisory briefing (the Supervisory Briefing) addressed to EU national competent authorities (regulators) to promote "common supervisory practices" on the EU Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR) and other pieces of EU legislation concerning financial sustainability. This was closely followed on 2 June 2022 by a publication of the European Supervisory Authorities – one of which is ESMA - (ESAs) which sets out clarifications (the ESA Clarifications) on the draft regulatory technical standards (RTS) under SFDR.

Questions on the interpretation of SFDR and the Taxonomy Regulation

On 13 May 2022, the European Supervisory Authorities (ESAs) submitted a number of questions to the European Commission relating to the interpretation of the Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR) and the Taxonomy Regulation (Taxonomy Regulation). Separately, the ESAs have also been asked by the European Commission for their input on possible amendments to the SFDR Delegated Regulation.

ESG Newsletter - Spring 2022

ESG and sustainability issues continue to be a priority for policy makers and regulators globally. The impact of the Ukraine conflict on energy policy and the recent publication of the IPCC's (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) "state of the union" report on the slender window we have to take action in order to meet our climate targets both highlight the scale of the global challenge we face on climate issues.

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.

Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR): Commission Guidance

The European Commission has published its long-awaited guidance regarding some of the Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation's (SFDR) known unknowns. The Guidance provides some additional clarity on the application of the SFDR, but unfortunately does not clearly answer all the outstanding questions.

Firms will need to continue to navigate uncertainty in the absence of clear law, guidance or a developed market practice.

Anti-bribery update: SFO enters into £103m DPA with Amec Foster Wheeler

On 1 July, which marks the 10th anniversary of the UK's Bribery Act coming into force, the Serious Fraud Office ("SFO") secured court approval for a Deferred Prosecution Agreement ("DPA") with Amec Foster Wheeler Energy Limited ("AFWEL"). This latest DPA concludes yet another significant multi-year corruption probe and highlights the importance of continued ABC compliance measures for multinational organisations.

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