The EU’s new Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (2014/65/EU) enables investment firms authorised in an EEA Member State to also provide, under certain conditions, to also provide investment services in other Member States (“EU passport”).
Cross-border activities may either be conducted a.) under the freedom to provide services (without a physical establishment in the country in question) or b.) via a branch or by making use of a tied agent established in the respective Member State.
In Austria, investment firms may apply for the “European Passport” pursuant to Article 3 of the Securities Supervision Act (WAG 2018; Wertpapieraufsichtsgesetz 2018). Investment services providers pursuant to Article 4 WAG 2018 are not able to make use of the European Passport.
Prior to commencement of the cross-border activity of an Austrian investment firm, the FMA is required pursuant to Article 18 WAG 2018 to submit information about the investment firm to the competent authority in the host Member State in which the investment services are intended to be provided.
For this reason, the questionnaire below (in German only) should be filled out, signed and returned to the FMA including all documentation listed in the questionnaire.
The FMA advises that the earliest possible point in time for the commencement of cross-border investment services under the freedom to provide services is as of the time that the entity has received confirmation in writing by the FMA. This will occur within one month following the FMA having received all required documentation.
If an investment firm establishes a branch in another EEA Member State or if it planned to make use of tied agents established in another EEA Member State, then the FMA checks whether, with regard to the planned activities, there is no reason to doubt the adequacy of the administrative structures or the financial situation of the investment firm. Where no doubts exist, then the FMA shall forward all necessary documentation within three months of receiving them to the competent authority in the host Member State, in which the branch is intended to be established or where the tied agent is established. The investment firm may only establish the branch following confirmation by the host Member State authority, or in the event that the host Member State does not issue a confirmation once two months have passed following the FMA having forwarded the notification to the host Member State authority, and then commence operations.
Below you can find a questionnaire for investment firms, which wish to provide services in the EEA via a branch or under the freedom to provide services:
Additionally an investment firm shall submit following forms (please select the appropriate form below) pursuant to Annex I of Directive (EU) 2017/2382.
Form for the branch passport notification and change of branch particulars notification:
Form for the investment services and activities passport notification and the change of investment services and activities particulars notification:
Form for the tied agent passport notification and change of tied agent particulars notification:
Form for a change in the tied agent particulars notification concerning the termination of the operation of a branch or the cessation of the use of a tied agent established in another Member State: