Financial Services Law

Financial Services Law 720X242

Our scope is investment funds, investment services, financial institutions, PSPs, EMIs, MSE Listings, Prospects and much more.Through our specialist expertise and financial services law knowledge, our advisors are able to provide results-driven commercial advice to these financial entities in Malta and Cyprus on some of their most complex transactions and help them to address some of their most challenging business issues and any other business which falls within the remit of financial services law.

Financial Services Law Expertise

Our specialised Financial Services practice is made up of a team of specialists from different disciplines, including lawyers, accountants and tax specialists drawn from our banking, capital markets, investment services, fund services, insurance, corporate, tax and real estate practices. We handpick professionals of an unrivalled breadth and depth of experience and work with a broad range of financial services institutions, credit institutions, insurance companies, funds and investment services companies to provide the best advice and assistance possible to our esteemed clients.

Malta Financial Services Law

In the past 20 years, Malta has fashioned itself into a serious jurisdiction in the financial services industry and has become a jurisdiction of choice for renowned financial businesses that seek to establish themselves in a secure and well-regulated EU domicile. The Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) has played a pivotal role in this industry’s growth. It regulates all financial activities in Malta, including banking, investment, insurance and pensions. The main legislations which regulate this industry are the Banking Act, the Investment Services Act, the Financial Institutions Act and the Insurance Intermediaries Act.

Cypriot Financial Services Law

Cyprus Financial Services Law 148(I)/2002 regulates the provision of financial services in Cyprus. A Cypriot company benefits from the ability to operate in any other Member State, directly or through the formation of a branch in accordance to the relevant EU directives. Thus, Cyprus has become an ideal jurisdiction for financial services, allowing non-EU companies registered in Cyprus to provide services throughout Europe with minimal requirements.

Cyprus has become a prime financial hub, with a number of domestic banks, as well as multiple foreign banks, International Banking Units (IBUs), insurance companies, and other companies that provide financial services. 

The Cypriot banking & financial services legislation is in line with international commercial practices. Its tax system is simplified, effective and transparent and fully EU, OECD, FATF and FSF compliant. Commercial banking mechanisms and practices are following the British model; all banks are able to use both traditional and specialised financial transactions, they support correspondent networks around the world.

Investment Funds

With an approachable and commercially-aware regulator implementing sound and responsible regulations, as well as a low cost and favourable fiscal base which allows ease of access to the European market for investment, Malta has succeeded in becoming a well-established jurisdiction of considerable depth and sophistication.

Malta has established itself as leading hub for funds, with hundreds of hedge funds, retail funds and UCITS schemes being established in Malta every year. Professional  Investors Funds (PIFs) remain the most popular hedge fund offered in Malta, proving to be an efficient and flexible vehicle which allows investors to conduct highly innovative or unorthodox investment strategies. Malta has also introduced the Alternative Investor Funds (AIFs) which fall within the remit of the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD) 2011/61/EU.

Cyprus is also an attractive investment funds jurisdiction, providing a lot of opportunities in relation to the licensing of retail funds, UCITS, private schemes, specialist schemes, professional investor funds and unit trust funds.

Cypriot regulatory authorities have managed to bring the funds framework in Cyprus at a par with other international jurisdictions, transposing of the UCITS IV Directive in 2012 and the AIFMD in 2013. Cyprus offers a European passport to the fund management industry and great possibilities for cross-border and global fund distribution through the laws transposing these two directives.

Cyprus has a strong banking infrastructure with low costs while complying with EU fund regulations and the best international practices. Various service providers are servicing a wide range of funds and providing operational support and reporting solutions for all those funds in the EU as well as non-EU countries at competitive rates. 

Insurance Law

With its sound regulatory environment, its EU membership, favourable tax regime and an English speaking workforce, Malta has become an attractive jurisdiction for a multitude of insurance companies who seek to conduct insurance business in Malta and by extension, other European countries. From only a handful of domestic insurance companies, the Maltese insurance sector has flourished into an entire industry which operates across the EU Member States. It comprises general and long-term business, subsidiaries of major international insurance and reinsurance undertakings, Affiliated Insurance Companies (Captives) and Insurance Management Companies.

Our insurance practice is also active in Cyprus in the field of insurance, regulatory and contract law. The firm represents Cypriot and foreign-owned companies providing insurance services in Cyprus including insurance companies, brokers, agents, sub-agents and managers.

Our Insurance practice provides various services, from licencing and compliance to corporate and personal tax planning, project management solutions, and legal advisory service in relation to captive insurance, the exercise of EU Passporting rights, the domiciliation of insurance companies and the various legal structures that Malta offers in the field of insurance such as Protected Cell Companies (PCCs) and Incorporated Cell Companies (ICCs).

Investment Services Law

Malta has registered steady growth as a hub for investment services within Europe. Nowadays, one may find a spectrum of investment businesses within Maltese shores, such as investment advisors, fund managers, forex brokers, securities market makers and stock brokers. Apart from a number of factors which have contributed to such a growth in investment services, one of the best perks enjoyed by investment service providers domiciled in Malta is the ability to passport their services and set up branches throughout Europe through a simplified ‘passporting procedure’, giving them a competitive edge over their competition.

Chetcuti Cauchi’s investment services practice rests on Malta and Cyprus’ roles as prime European hubs for financial Services. Our wealth of expertise in all aspects of financial services makes us the leading advisors of choice for Maltese and foreign clients planning to use Malta or Cyprus as their centre, HQ or branch for their financial activity. Our range of services is broad as we assist clients in licensing and compliance, corporate and personal tax, accounting, and project management. 


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Key Contacts

Mr Nicholas Warren

Senior Manager, Financial Services, Blockchain & Fintech

+356 22056415

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