Decree-Law no. 56/2021 and its impact on insurance and reinsurance activity, the financial instruments market, minimum banking services and crowdfunding
On 30th of June of 2021, a Decree-Law transposing EU Directive 2019/2177 on insurance and reinsurance activity and EU Directive 2020/1504 on collaborative finance providers was published.
Since the 1st of July 2021, the date of entry into force of Decree-Law no. 56/2021, it is applicable in the national legal system (without prejudice to articles.4 and 10, which come into force on 1st of January 2022).
The referred Decree-Law transposes EU Directive 2019/2177, of the European Parliament and of the Council, of 18th of December of 2019, which amended:
• Directive 2009/138/EC on the taking-up and pursuit of the business of insurance and reinsurance (Solvency II Directive);
• The Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (Directive 2014/65/EU or MiFID II); and
• The 4th Directive on the prevention of the use of the financial system for the purpose of money laundering or terrorist financing, or "AML/CTF" (EU Directive 2015/849).
The Directive now transposed into national law with the publication and entry into force of this Decree-Law No. 56/2021, of 30th of June, strengthens the cooperation and interconnection between national and European authorities in matters regulated by those three directives, as well as the intervention of the European supervisory authorities.
In the insurance sector, it will produce the 7th amendment to the legal framework for access to insurance and reinsurance activity approved in the annex to Law 147/2015 of 9th of September, strengthening the framework for cooperation between national supervisors and the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority or EIOPA, particularly with regard to cross-border activities.
In the financial markets sector, certain supervisory powers in relation to the activity of data communication service providers are also centralized in the European Securities Markets Authority, or ESMA, whose regulation is now essentially contained in Union regulations.
It also makes the 4th amendment to Law No. 83/2017, of 18 August, which establishes measures to combat AML/CTF, and now concentrates, in a transversal manner for the financial sector, on the European Banking Authority (EBA) supervisory powers regarding the prevention of AML/CTF.
This Decree-Law also ensures the transposition of Directive (EU) 2020/1504 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 October 2020 (EU Directive 2020/1504) on the rules applicable to crowdfunding or collaborative financing, amending the Securities Code, approved by Decree-Law 486/99 of 13th of November of 1999, in its current wording.
Lastly, it also makes specific adjustments to the legal framework for minimum banking services and payment accounts, clarifying and aligning national law to transpose Directive 2014/92/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 July 2014 and making the 7th amendment to Decree-Law No. 27-C/2000 of 10 November. No. 27-C/2000, of 10th of March, which creates the system of access to minimum banking services and the 1st amendment to Decree-Law No. 107/2017, of 30th of August, which establishes the rules relating to the switching of payment accounts, the comparability of the respective fees, as well as access to payment accounts with basic features.
The hearing of the Commission for the Coordination of Policies for Prevention and Combating Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing and the National Consumer Council was also promoted.
To access the full text of the new law, please click here.
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