Circular to Issuers of Virtual Financial Assets

The Malta Financial Services Authority (“MFSA”) has issued a Circular to Issuers of Virtual Financial Assets (the “Circular”) identifying the way forward for Issuers of Virtual Financial Assets (“VFA”). The Circular caters for VFA Issuers (“Issuers”) that are either availing themselves of the transitory period under Article 62(1)(a) of the VFA Act or fall within the scope of exemption under Regulation 3 of the VFA Regulations but will continue their offering after the 31st January 2019.

The Circular provides information particularly in relation to the following matters:

  • Online Registration Form for Whitepapers

The Whitepaper Registration Form will be divided into two stages and Stage One of this form, which has been made available online, would need to be duly filled in and submitted by the Issuer’s appointed VFA agent by the 31st January 2019.

  • Financial Instrument Test

The final version of the Financial Instrument Test has been issued on the MFSA’s website and the MFSA will be shortly issuing an updated Guidance Note to the Financial Instrument Test.

  • New definitions

The Glossary of Terms of the VFA Framework has been updated in order to include new definitions, particularly in relation to the offer of virtual financial assets to the public, admission to trading on DLT exchanges, and Systems Auditors.

  • Systems Auditors

The MFSA clarifies that for the time being, Issuers are only required to appoint a Systems Auditor that falls within the definition provided in the Glossary of Terms of the VFA Framework. However, such person would still need to meet all the competence recognition criteria and the system audits and reports need to be conducted in accordance with the relevant Systems Auditor Guidelines issued by the Malta Digital Innovation Authority.

Please feel free to contact us for more information.