HM Treasury and Financial Regulators’ updates on Brexit preparation

Almost a year after it was introduced, a key piece of UK domestic Brexit legislation has now been passed.  The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 (EUWA), which aims to provide a functioning statute book on the day the UK leaves the EU, completed its difficult passage through the UK Parliament and passed into law on 26 June 2018. Please refer to our briefing, “The UK’s new legal order post-Brexit: A new class of UK law” for a summary of the EUWA.

Following the passing of the EUWA, HM Treasury, the Bank of England, FCA and the Payment Services Regulator (PSR) have each published statements on their approaches to their role in preparing for Brexit, a summary of which is set out here.

Recent Sanctions Developments: EU relaxes certain Syrian sanctions and amends measures relating to North Korea, Iran and Tunisia; US relaxes Myanmar sanctions

The EU has recently published a new Regulation (Regulation 697/2013 of 22 July 2013 (“Regulation 697/2013”)) which amends Regulation 36/2012, the key piece of legislation setting out the EU’s sanctions against Syria.  In this briefing we analyse the new provisions and provide an update on other recent changes to EU and US sanctions. Continue reading

UK: Interim report on independent review of the Investment Bank Special Administration Regime

Peter Bloxham has completed the first phase of his independent review of the Investment Bank Special Administration Regulations 2011 and in February 2013 presented an interim report, which HM Treasury has now published.   In addition to making a number of immediate recommendations, the interim report sets out further areas to be reviewed as part of a second phase of work.  The SAR review home page indicates that Mr Bloxham would welcome views from interested stakeholders on the issues raised in this first report.   A final report is to be issued in July 2013. Continue reading

EU takes steps towards easing Zimbabwe sanctions

Susannah Cogman and Jeremy Sher comment on the EU’s recent easing of the Zimbabwe sanctions regime.

On 19 February 2013, the European Union (“EU“) took a small step towards easing its sanctions regime in relation to Zimbabwe.  Twenty one individuals and one entity were removed from the EU’s list of designated persons, and the travel ban imposed on six members of the Government was suspended.  These twenty one designated persons had been subject to the EU’s asset freezing regime under Council Regulation (EC) No 314/2004.  These amendments have effect from 21 February 2013.

Continue reading

Financial Services (Banking Reform) Bill laid before Parliament: Regulator to be given power to enforce full separation

The Financial Services (Banking Reform) Bill (the Bill) was introduced to Parliament on 4 February 2013.  On the same day, the Government published its response to the report which the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards (PCBS) published at the end of last year and which formed part of the pre-legislative scrutiny of the Bill. Continue reading

Iran sanctions update: New EU measures in force

On 22 December 2012, three new EU measures in relation to Iran were published in the EU Official Journal.  These expand the existing suite of EU sanctions, and are likely to be relevant to any EU companies, or persons within the EU, still engaged in trade with Iran, Iranian persons or Iranian-origin goods.

Probably the most eye-catching measure is the bringing into force of the EU embargo on Iranian-origin gas.  The new regulations, however, deserve full and careful reading.  In addition to the gas embargo, new trade and financial sanctions have been introduced, the existing trade sanctions and associated ‘grandfathering’ provisions have been amended to some extent, and the EU’s asset freeze regime has been extended to cover additional persons.

A summary of the new measures is provided below, under the following headings:

  • The new EU measures
  • UK implementation and guidance
  • The gas embargo
  • Other trade sanctions
  • Financial sector restrictions
  • Other new provisions of interest
  • Conclusion  Continue reading