first_img“In a way the Commission is not playing by the rules”Andreas Stepnitzka, senior regulatory policy adviser at EFAMA However, in its draft text the Commission argues that products in the former category “do not necessarily achieve” a certain level of sustainability and should therefore meet additional requirements if they are to be deemed suitable for clients with sustainability preferences.These additional limitations have provoked concerns among stakeholders – the Investment Association said it had “serious” concerns, the PRI said they were “substantial”.  Asset managers and their trade bodies, the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), and other organisations have criticised, on multiple grounds, the European Commission’s proposed definition of “sustainability preferences” in draft amendments of MiFID II rules that form part of the implementation of its sustainable finance action package.Interested parties had until 6 July to provide feedback on these and other draft delegated acts aiming to incorporate sustainability issues and considerations into the EU financial services regulatory framework, as formed by the UCITS Directive, the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD), and MiFID II.The proposed amendments to the MiFID delegated acts include requiring investment firms to consider the sustainability preferences of clients in determining the suitability of products.The Commission has proposed these preferences be defined in relation to two types of financial products that are defined by the recently adopted sustainable finance disclosures regulation (SFDR): so-called Article 8 products that promote environmental and social characteristics and Article 9 products that pursue sustainability objectives.center_img EFAMA said it strongly rejected the Commission’s aforementioned portrayal of Article 8 and that it was “essential” the EC change its current proposals to ensure the final delegated acts were fully aligned with the SFDR.Andreas Stepnitzka, senior regulatory policy adviser at the European asset management trade body, told IPE the Commission was giving its own interpretation of Article 8 products.“What we understood was that some people in the Commission didn’t like where Article 8 has ended up after having been discussed with the co-legislators,” he said. “In a way the Commission is not playing by the rules.”At Schroders, deputy head of public policy Elisabeth Ottawa assessed the situation thus: “[T]he suggested additional requirements lack any justification, are in conflict with the co-legislators’ will clearly expressed in SFDR and the taxonomy regulation and limit investor’s ESG product choice.“Also, they will potentially confuse investors when confronted with different categories/definitions of ESG products, depending on the point of communication,” she said. Sustainability boost questionedOthers focussed on the potential real world environmental and social implications of the Commission’s proposed definition.In its feedback, Aviva said it saw incorporating sustainability into suitability assessments as a “a key game-changer in investment behaviour” but that the proposed definition, despite being an improvement on that in earlier drafts, was too narrowly drawn.“[It] may have the unintended consequence of undermining broader policy aims of using financing to help as wide a part of the economy transition into sustainable practices,” the insurer said.“It fails to engage the wider role that financing can play in the transition, through for example, stewardship, integration, or impact investments,” it added. “The failure to engage client demand to finance that wider range of activities overlooks the importance of creating conditions that support investing to support the transition.”The PRI argued that the “gold-plating” of Article 8 funds was misguided, and reflected an inaccurate understanding of how individual investors could influence outcomes in the real economy.“In many cases, exposure to harmful activities is essential to influencing environmental performance of underlying investee (for example, through voting in support of adoption of meaningful climate transition plans),” said the investor association.“Stating that a client can only have a preference for a fund that avoids all exposure to harmful activities would remove fund options that may be better aligned with their preferences.”“We fear that the provisions as they are could lead to the promotion of exclusionary products only and neglect the positive impact component of sustainable investing”ShareActionNGOs echoed some of the aforementioned concerns. ShareAction, for example, writing that “we fear that the provisions as they are could lead to the promotion of exclusionary products only (based on negative screening) and neglect the positive impact component of sustainable investing”.However, its diagnosis was that the problem lay not with the definition of the potential product offering, but with the absence of a more detailed framework for how to assess clients’ sustainability preferences.Think tank 2° Investing Initiative has been carrying out research on retail investors and their sustainability preferences, and said it was “unclear as to the rationale for limiting the pool of financial instruments for a client’s preferences” in the way the Commission was proposing.“More crucially,” it said, “the current definition still fails to identify the financial instruments sought by impact-oriented clients”.The remedies suggested by the various stakeholders varied.Aviva, EFAMA, the Investment Association and Schroders called for the Commission to scrap the additional limitations on Article 8 products, while 2° Investing Initiative suggested that the sustainability preferences definition be amended to include an additional category of financial instrument.It defined this as “a financial instrument that “has as its objective to positively impact the environment and society through a specific and measurable contribution of the investor”.The PRI, meanwhile, suggested scrapping the attempt to define a client’s sustainability preferences in relation to fund categories and to instead adopt a broader definition.It recommended the following: Sustainability preferences means a client’s or potential client’s choice as whether, to what extent and how sustainability-related investment objectives should be reflected into his or her investment strategy.Looking for IPE’s latest magazine? 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first_imgLeinster host Pro 12 leaders Ospreys while Ulster are away to Glasgow WarriorsBoth games kick-off at 7.35Cian Bohane makes a first start for Munster at centre alongside Keith Earls tomorrow at Thomond Park against Edinburgh. Connacht have named their side to face Scarletts in Wales tomorrow Ireland internationals Matt Healy, Kieran Marmion, Finlay Bealham, Quinn Roux and Ultan Dillane are all brought in to the team. Ian Keatley is at full back while Nenagh’s Donnacha Ryan is among the replacements.Reds Director of Rugby Rassie Eramus says he is expecting a tough game.last_img read more

first_imgMinister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare * Egbe tasks the new ‘Games Master General’ on infrastructureThe new Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Sunday Dare, has pledged to give equal attention to the development of sports and the youths as he strives to reposition the ministry.He insisted that it is no longer going to be business as usual with controversies trailing every action of the ministry as it was in the past. “I’m not unaware of the challenges, controversies and development in this ministry.“It’s a ministry that is dear to the hearts of Nigerians. Beyond sports, there are other ways we can develop the youths. We will be thinking outside the box,” he said.The new minister disclosed this to NAN yesterday in Abuja at the sidelines of the 2019 International Youth Day.Dare who was performing his first official assignment after his swearing in on Wednesday by President Muhammadu Buhari alongside 42 other ministers said he was ready to hit the ground running.He assured stakeholders in that he was going to take the ministry to the next level in line with President Buhari’s mandate.“I can assure you that attention will be paid to youth development and sports development.“The mandate is clear and the two mandate areas will be given equal attention, ” he said.NAN reports that the assurance is coming on the heels of accusation in a section of the media that previous ministers had paid more attention to sports, especially football at the expense of youth development.The minister had on Wednesday shortly after his inauguration highlighted the nexus between Sports and the youths and how it can be harnessed for national development.“Youth development is key to the success of any government. We have youths, we have sports. Our mandate area is very clear.“We must broaden our horizons, we must deepen the work we do and quality of work we bring to the table.The minister, a veteran journalist was the Executive Commissioner, Stakeholder Management, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) before is appointment.Meanwhile, FIFA licensed match agent, Ebi Egbe has congratulated new sports minister, Sunday Dare on his appointment, even as he charged him to ensure that his tenure is one that would see a change in the face of the nation’s sporting facilities.Egbe in a statement yesterday said the new sports minister must as a matter of priority take steps to upgrade the nation’s sporting facilities.He noted that most of the sporting facilities owned by the federal government have been left to decay insisting that Nigeria would not excel in sports under the present situation.“I m happy President Muhammadu Buhari has put a cerebral personality who is well educated and widely traveled in charge of our sports. The new minister must ensure that the nation’s sporting facilities are upgraded to meet international standard. It is a shame that the Lagos and Abuja National Stadiums in particular are in bad shape. As a stadium facility expert, I want the minister to quickly do something in that area. And as I have always said, Monimichelle would be ready to partner the federal government in this area.”Egbe who is the Chief Executive Officer of Monimichelle, a stadium construction outfit said Nigeria would rule the world in sports if our athletes get the right facilities to train at home.“We’ve got the talents to rule the world. From football to basketball, boxing, name it. All we need do is to put the right things in place here at home. With the new digital sports minister and the vibrant Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) President Amaju Melvin Pinnick, I think we are in for a new beginning. The era of needless crisis in our football is gone. I wish the minister well as he grapples with the numerous challenges facing Nigerian sports,” Egbe concludedShare this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more