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Swiss CISA reforms 'don't go far enough'

Friday 7 October 2011 - by Karina Whalley

Proposed amendments to Switzerland's collective investment scheme regime "do not go far enough", according to the Swiss financial regulator.

The Financial Market Supervisory Authority said on Friday that revisions to the Collective Investment Schemes Act by the Swiss Federal Council fail to address some key concerns.

It wants the government to go further to address possible conflicts of interest and improve transparency on fees charged to investors.

"If the CISA will be revised, there is a need to take this opportunity and address several important topics for the protection of investors," said the authority.

The CISA is to be revised to align the Swiss regime better with international legal standards following pressure from the European Union.

Without the change in the law, it would be much more difficult for institutional asset managers to continue managing European funds from Switzerland.

The proposals, which went out to consultation on 6 July, would see asset managers of foreign collective investment schemes subjected to heightened supervision, as well as a tightening of custody and distribution regulations.

Finma has acknowledged that the revisions are required, but believes they should only be the government's "first step" in beefing up financial supervision.

"Finma's experiences of the act over recent years have shown that the need for action extends beyond the areas of administration, custody and distribution," it added.

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