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The new format CIFSA CPD Seminar took place on the 2nd of June 2015. All CIFSA seminars now conform to the Cyprus Securities Exchange Committee regulations for CPD and will enable delegates to receive valuable CPD accreditation. CIFSA has previously always focused on education as a primary goal for the Seminars and the new format reinforces this focus. This first new format seminar is a precursor to the 3rd Quarter Seminar, which will include representation from FECIF and CIFA and will focus on the impact of new MIFiD and IMD regulation on the delivery of Financial Services in Cyprus.

Subjects covered in this Seminar included, the voting and outcome of the UK election and the agenda for the new UK government in the next session of Parliament. The CIFSA Chairman provided an overview of the new ICCS complaints procedure which came into effect in May 2015. In particular this included an update following the appointment of the Financial Ombudsman, who is the appropriate authority to review unresolved complaints.

Richard Robinson on behalf of Kestral provided an excellent presentation on the advantages of the diversified long only global Kestrel Global Fund, a Dublin registered UCITS IV Fund. Richard described the fund as a Dynamic long only, multi asset allocation Fund, of over £166 million ($270m) in size. The fund was established 1 May 2012 and has daily trading, with 5 currency classes (GBP, USD, EUR, CHF, SEK). In particular Richard stressed the advantage of funds that are liquid, holding asset classes that can easily be sold in a matter of hours or days, compared to other fund classes where liquidity can be an issue. The fund managers adopt a modern approach to traditional investment holding, listed equities, debt securities, money market instruments, real estate, commodities, absolute return funds and currencies. Used by institutional investors and retail investors alike this type of fund can offer both upside potential with downside protection.

Matt Tailford from Sovereign Trustees described the impact of some of the changes seen in recent UK Finance Acts relating to UK Pensions. Described as “the most radical shake up of UK Pensions” the changes require a major shift in the type and scope of advice required by individuals nearing retirement. The UK has seen successive governments amend and alter pension’s legislation over the last 30 years and the latest changes are intended to offer individuals “greater freedom of choice”. For those individuals moving overseas the changes mean that it is essential that they receive local guidance and advice based on their personal circumstances and country of residence. Issues such as double tax treaties, residency, domicile, succession planning and benefits will all require careful analysis to make sure that non UK residents make the most of their UK Pensions.

Alexandros Constantinou of MAP S.Platis provided delegates with a Global overview of Anti Money Laundering Trends. Alexander described the origins of the latest initiatives to combat Global organised crime, which accounts for up to 2.5% of World GDP. The focus of new AML legislation and cooperation is to prevent access to financial services and markets by organised crime, terrorist groups, corrupt politicians and individuals, whilst also reducing the availability of methods of tax evasion. Recommendations from FATF form the basis of international regulations and provide a framework for governments to regulate and control the movement of money generated illegally. In addition the AML legislation is equally intended to prevent and mitigate both tax evasion and aggressive tax avoidance by imposing transparency requirements on individuals and legal entities. In Europe and in Cyprus new AML legislation has been framed and implemented to ensure compliance with internationally acceptable practices.

To close the Seminar, St.John Coombes reminded delegates of the need to keep up to date with new regulations and requirements and understand that in a constantly changing landscape it is essential to keep informed. CIFSA Seminars offer delegates the opportunity to obtain valuable information from primary source presenters and discuss matters raised directly with them.

This Seminar provided delegates with 1 and a half hours CYSEC CPD and 3 hours total CPD. All delegates can log onto the CIFSA web site to register for their certificates of attendance.

The sponsors and the attendees overwhelmingly rated the CIFSA Seminar a success describing the information as informative and well presented.

CIFSA Seminars are Free to members of CIFSA.

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