The European Central Securities Depositories Association (ECSDA) was established in 1997 in Madrid as a forum of exchange of ideas and common initiatives. ESCDA has established six working groups; currently, three working groups are in operation and representatives of KDPW are actively involved in their work. The Association includes 39 representatives of European CSDs from 35 countries.
- Public Policy Working Group (WG 2) chaired by Paul Symons (Euroclear);
- Working Group on settlement and related processes (WG3) chaired by Robert Fair (Euroclear);
- Working Group on harmonisation (WG 5) chaired by Adriana Tanasoiu (Depozitarul Central) .
ECSDA Public Policy Working Group (WG2)
The ECSDA Public Policy Working Group analyses and responds to regulatory and legal developments as they affect (I)CSDs across Europe. It provides advice to ECSDA members through the ECSDA Board of Directors on initiatives and legal proposals concerning developments on the capital market.
The below initiatives in particular have been actively monitored by WG2:
- EU legislation affecting (I)CSDs, including the Settlement Finality Directive, UCITS legislation;
- the development of the ESCB/CESR Recommendations for SSSs (and the CPSS/IOSCO recommendations at the international level);
- the removal of the Legal Barriers identified in the Giovannini Reports of 2001 and 2003;
- the follow-up of the Code of Conduct commitments, including developing a conversion table to facilitate price comparability across CSDs.
The main function of the group is to develop a common position of ECSDA representatives on issues of public financial and regulatory policy. WG2 monitors and issues opinions on initiatives concerning depository and settlement services on European Union level, including in particular Target2Securities, work on the draft Securities Law Harmonisation Directive, and ESBC/CESR Recommendations for CSDs. In addition, the group’s representatives work on global initiatives including the draft UNIDROIT Convention, as well as IOSCO, BIS, OECD and IMF reports.
The work of WG2 in 2013 focused on the draft CSDR, in particular the provisions ensuring the highest possible efficiency of settlement, the scope of licensing of services provided by CSDs, the applicability of CSDR to non-EU CSDs, and the development of operational links between CSDs. The Group was involved in lobbying initiatives. WG2 monitored the draft MiFID II of the European Parliament and of the Council. The Group drafted comments on the CPSS-IOSCO consultation paper and the Financial Stability Board report “Recovery and resolution of financial market infrastructures”.
WG3 works on issues concerning operational relations between CSDs. WG3 focuses on cross-border securities clearing and settlement. WG3 representatives were actively involved in the drafting of the Code of Conduct Access & Interoperability Guideline.
In 2013, WG3 updated the report on CSD compliance with ECSDA-ESSF settlement instruction matching standards. The Group drafted a report on planned migration of the European markets to the new settlement cycle T+2 and on implementation of partial settlement by CSDs and plans of the markets to comply with the requirements of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA).
The objective of ECSDA's WG5 is to harmonise CSD procedures. Since 2007, WG5 has focused on standardisation of corporate actions in order to eliminate the third Giovannini Barrier.
In this work, the group has prepared corporate actions processing reports containing market standards of corporate actions processing including mandatory distributions and market claims. The standards developed by WG5 were incorporated into the work of the Corporate Actions Joint Working Group (CAJWG), which produced European corporate actions processing standards, Markets Standards for Corporate Actions Processing, published by CAJWG in 2009.
Since 2008, the work of WG5 mainly includes the participation of WG5 representatives in initiatives of CAJWG and the Joint Working Group on General Meetings (JWGGM), which is responsible for developing Market Standards on General Meetings. WG5 also monitors market developments which could impact existing market standards, in particular in relation to safekeeping and asset servicing. In 2010, the final version of market standards on general meetings was drafted by JWGGM with the participation of ESCDA WG5 representatives.