March 18, 2020

ICMA and ISLA Request Six Month Delay to SFTR

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, ICMA and ISLA have requested a delay to SFTR. The current go-live date is 11th April, but the firms have asked for this to be pushed back to 11thSeptember 2020.

In a letter sent to ESMA, Martin Scheck (CEO of ICMA) and Andrew Dyson (CEO of ISLA) wrote:

“Unfortunately, the run-up to the first reporting start date on 11 April has coincided with the acceleration in the proliferation and intensity of the COVID-19 pandemic. The impact on personnel involved in SFTR implementation programmes, compounded by pressures on firms caused by the associated surges in market volatility and volumes, has reached a point where firms believe that their capacity to ensure compliance with the requirements as of 11 April has been critically compromised.”

“In light of such exceptional circumstances, we would like to ask ESMA to initiate, as a matter of urgency, the procedure for obtaining a formal delay of the SFTR reporting go-live date to an appropriate date that falls well outside the expected critical phase of the pandemic. We suggest that this could be 11 October 2020, the reporting start date for the third phase of SFTR reporting"

"In the absence of a formal delay, we would ask ESMA, at a minimum, to consider equivalent measures that would provide forbearance and sufficient reassurance for firms that they are not expected by ESMA and their respective NCA to ensure strict compliance with SFTR reporting obligations for an appropriate period of time following the legal reporting start date. Again, the October start date would seem to be a reasonable reference point.”

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