Malta: Double Tax Treaties
Other International Agreements
In January, 2004, the Guernsey Financial Services Commission and the Malta Financial Services Authority signed a Memorandum of Understanding which provides a framework for closer cooperation between the two regulatory bodies. The Memorandum provides a formal basis for cooperation, including the exchange of information and investigative assistance.
Peter Neville, Director General of the Commission, commented: "I am very pleased to have taken this step. I advised Malta on the setting up of its investment services regulation, and I have known the Maltese regulators for many years."
He added: "This Memorandum of Understanding between the Commission and the Malta Financial Services Authority is another step towards strengthening our relationship, providing a formal basis by which we can cooperate and exchange vital information."
In May, 2004, the respective chairmen of the Maltese and United Kingdom financial regulators signed a memorandum of understanding, facilitating the exchange of information and investigative assistance.
The agreement was signed by Professor Joe Bannister, head of the Malta Financial Services Authority and Callum McCarthy, the UK's Financial Services Authority chief in London, and lays down a formal basis for cooperation between the two bodies.
The MFSA and the FSA believe such co-operation will enable them to more effectively perform their functions," stated the text of the MOU.
Noting that the authorities of Malta and the UK have long cooperated on an informal basis, Professor Bannister explained that the growing complexity of the global financial system necessitated the inking of a formal agreement to combat the threat of financial crime.
In July, 2004, the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) and the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission entered into a Memorandum of Understanding on exchange of information. The Memorandum was signed in Malta by MFSA Chairman Prof. J.V. Banister and Mr. Marcus Killick, Chairman and Commissioner of Gibraltars Financial Services Commission.
The MOU sets out to establish a formal basis for co-operation, including the exchange of information and investigative assistance in the fields of banking, insurance, investment services and the provision of professional trusteeship and company management services, and the exchange of information on supervisory practices and techniques.”
During Mr. Killick's visit, bilateral talks were held on how regulatory and supervisory collaboration between the two organizations may be further enhanced, including proposals for reciprocal visits by staff and other means of improving mutual understanding of the operations and supervisory techniques of the organizations.
In November, 2005, the Jersey Financial Services Commission and the Malta Financial Services Authority signed a Memorandum of Understanding, which provides specifically for the exchange of information between the two financial services regulators.
The Memorandum of Understanding constitutes a statement of intent by the regulators to create a formal framework for regulatory collaboration, investigative assistance and co-operation. Such collaboration should help to protect investors and depositors and to promote the integrity of financial services markets in the two jurisdictions.
The Memorandum of Understanding commits both regulators to providing help within the limits of each jurisdiction's laws, and setting up procedures and liaison points so that requests for information needed for tackling financial regulatory offences can be handled rapidly and efficiently. The agreement also provides an environment for the development of additional business between the two jurisdictions.
Commenting on the MoU, David Carse, Director General of the Jersey FSC noted: "I am delighted to sign this Memorandum of Understanding with the MFSA. It is the latest in a number established between the Commission and regulators in the European Union."
Meanwhile, Mr Carse's counterpart at the MFSA, Joe Bannister, observed: "This is part of our process to increase collaboration with recognised finance centres. There is extensive collaboration between practitioners in Malta and Jersey, and this Memorandum of Understanding will further enhance business between the two finance centres."”
In May 2008, the Malta Financial Services Authority and the Central Bank of Cyprus announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding.
The Memorandum of Understanding defines a general framework of mutual cooperation and exchange of information between the two authorities with a view to facilitating the consolidated supervision of cross-border establishments and ensuring the safe functioning of credit institutions in the respective countries, in accordance with their national laws and regulations.
The Cayman Islands Monetary Authority (CIMA) formally established bilateral ties with the MFSA on February 18, 2009.
Heads of the two financial services regulators sealed the terms of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in a signing ceremony at CIMA. This agreement will govern cooperation and the exchange of information between the organisations; something that had already been taking place on an informal basis.
Signing on behalf of the MFSA, Chairman and President Professor Joseph Bannister said: “This is just a matter of formalising that relationship as Malta has a policy of signing MOUs with other financial-services jurisdictions. We have always had good relations with Cayman and exchanged information freely. Information has always been provided to us when required regardless of whatever sector of the financial services industry it has been.”
MFSA was established in 2002 as the single regulator for financial services activities in Malta. It regulates and supervises credit and financial institutions, investment, trust and insurance business and also houses the country's Companies Registry. In addition, MFSA, like CIMA, complies with the Basel Core Principles for Effective Banking Supervision and is a member of the International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS). The MFSA has membership in the International Organization of Investment Securities Commission (IOSCO), as well as the Committee of European Securities Regulators (CESR). It has also signed at least 17 bilateral MOUs with regulators in other jurisdictions including United Kingdom, Dubai, Bermuda, Jersey, Isle of Man, Belgium, Netherlands, Portugal and Mauritius.
CIMA's Managing Director Cindy Scotland concurred with her Maltese counterpart, noting that CIMA has received a significant number of requests for assistance from MFSA in the past.
“We are pleased to formally recognise the bond of cooperation that has existed for some time and we look forward to continuing that. This MOU will create a framework that will facilitate greater mutual assistance between us - the regulators of financial services in Cayman and Malta - with regard to effectively carrying out our duties.”
On 26 January, 2010, the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) concluded a Memorandum of Understanding(MOU) Regarding Securities and Futures Regulatory Cooperation with Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) in Malta. The MOU was signed by CSRC Chairman Mr. Shang Fulin and MFSA Chairman Mr. Joe V. Bannister. It is hoped that the MOU signed between the two regulators will enhance exchanges of views and cooperation in the field of securities and futures supervision and promote sound development of capital markets in both countries.
On 14 June, 2010, the MFSA announced that it had successfully concluded and signed a memorandum of Understanding (“MoU”) with the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (the "APRA"). The MoU establishes a framework for assistance, the sharing of supervisory information and cross-border co-operation in the area of banking and insurance supervision to the extent permitted by the laws and regulations in force in Malta and Australia. The agreement was signed by Prof. Joe V. Bannister, Chairman of the MFSA, and Dr John Laker, Chairman of the APRA.
On 1 December, 2011, the MFSA announced that had concluded and signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the National Bank of Slovakia. The MoU establishes a framework for assistance, the sharing of supervisory information and cross-border co-operation. This MoU expands on the previous MoU signed between the MFSA and the NBS in 2004, which was limited to information sharing in the field of banking supervision. The updated version of the MoU includes provisions on co-operation and information sharing in the fields of insurance supervision and the supervision of securities markets. The agreement was signed by Prof. Joe V. Bannister, Chairman of the MFSA, and Mr Jozef Makuch, Governor of the NBS.
On 13 March, 2012, the Qatar Financial Centre Regulatory Authority concluded and signed a memorandum of Understanding ("MoU") with the MFSA. It establishes a framework for assistance, the sharing of supervisory information and cross-border co-operation on the supervision and regulation of banking, financial and insurance-related activities as permitted by law and regulations in Malta and Qatar. MFSA chairman Joe Bannister and Qatar Financial Centre Regulatory Authority acting chief executive officer Michael Ryan signed the agreement.