MiFID II deadlines under further pressure

The European Commission (EC) and ESMA have agreed on an improved process to draft the Level 2 texts for MiFID II. On the back of those discussions, ESMA asked for a 3-month extension on their own deadline to submit draft technical standards and the EC granted it. While the next Level 2 drafts will now not be published until September 2015, the benefit is that further changes are less likely. It is certainly better for everyone that ESMA and the EC avoid a game of legal ping pong.

However, ESMA’s statement that this will not delay the implementation time seems to me rather bold. The initial implementation plan has been viewed by participants as ambitious from the outset; having to wait an additional three months before we see any further detail is not helpful.

Looking back at the EMIR implementation, this pattern looks somewhat familiar. The combination of no EU no-action letter, delayed Level 2 negotiations and a go-live date set in stone in Level 1, will doubtless result in increased implementation pressure.

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