ESMA publishes first supervisory convergence work programme

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published its first Supervisory Convergence Work Programme 2016 (SCWP), which details the activities and tasks it will carry out to promote sound, efficient and consistent supervision across the European Union.

The publication of the SCWP expands on the high-level objective outlined in the Annual Work Programme 2016 and fulfils a key commitment in ESMA’s Strategic Orientation 2016-2020 to outline how it would refocus its resources from single rulebook to supervisory convergence work.

ESMA has taken a systematic approach to developing the SCWP involving consideration of the regulatory and market environment, national competent authorities’ (NCAs) priorities, the supervisory convergence tools available to ESMA, and applying specific parameters relating to what the work should achieve and how it should be done. The priority areas for 2016 are:

  • Preparing for the sound, efficient and consistent implementation and supervision of MiFID 2/MiFIR;
  • Finalising the data and IT infrastructure needed to support the effective implementation and supervision of MiFID 2/MiFIR and MAR;
  • Facilitating the sound and consistent supervision of OTC derivatives markets and in particular of EU CCPs; and
  • Supporting the effective application of the European Commission’s Capital Markets Union plan.

In addition ESMA also aims to provide support to NCAs through supervisory briefings, workshops, live case forums and mediation assistance.
Steven Maijoor, ESMA Chair, said “ESMA’s supervisory work programme sets out for the first time, in detail, why we will refocus our activities on supervisory convergence, how we identified 2016’s priorities in this area and how we are going to go about focusing on supervisory convergence. This publication marks a significant change in ESMA’s direction and shows our commitment to our objective of fostering supervisory convergence.

“Our overall aim is to achieve high, consistent standards of supervision that supports investor protection, orderly markets and financial stability which are key to a well-functioning Capital Markets Union.”

Next steps

The work programme will contribute towards a number of aims such as the effective implementation of rules, facilitating the exchange of experience between national competent authorities, the coordination of supervisory activity, the development of effective supervisory approaches, the assessment of supervision by national competent authorities through peer reviews, and the identification of barriers to convergent supervision.

Implementation of the 2016 SCWP will be monitored in the course of 2016 and priorities may be readjusted depending on developments during the year. It will also be used to inform ESMA’s Annual Work Programme and its supervisory convergence work programme for future years both of which will be risk-based.

Lavanya Rathnam

Lavanya Rathnam is an experienced technology, finance, and compliance writer. She combines her keen understanding of regulatory frameworks and industry best practices with exemplary writing skills to communicate complex concepts of Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC) in clear and accessible language. Lavanya specializes in creating informative and engaging content that educates and empowers readers to make informed decisions. She also works with different companies in the Web 3.0, blockchain, fintech, and EV industries to assess their products’ compliance with evolving regulations and standards.

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