ESMA Publishes Work Programme 2021 – More Compliance or a Relief for Companies in Europe?

Considering the changing landscape, ESMA has taken the initiative to promote and build sustainable finance and long-term oriented markets. To achieve this goal, ESMA has introduced the brand new Work Programme 2021 to deal with the opportunities and risks posed by digitisation, ultimately strengthening the EU’s role in the global marketplace.

Through the Work Programme 2021 (WP), ESMA has set out its priorities and areas of focus for the next 12 months. This Programme is basically the outline of how the next year is going to turn out, be it in terms of challenges, opportunities, risks, or investments in the EU capital markets.

Here’s an outline of the Programme and how it is going to benefit EU companies:-

●    Market Integrity

Taking advantage of the Covid-19 outbreak, ESMA is preparing the EU economy to overcome any challenges concerned with short selling bans and related emergency measures. So, if the need arises, ESMA will draft a new RTS and ITS under the Market Abuse Regulation (MAR) or revise the existing ones. This can help companies prepare themselves in case of an emergency, keeping the market integrity intact.

●    Data Reporting

Data quality has always been a top priority for ESMA, especially when it comes to the ESEF reporting system. So it’s only fair to include this in the 2021 Work Programme initiative. ESMA intends to review, analyse, and draft RTS and ITS on reporting under MiFID II/MiFIR review and provide potential technical advice related to investment management legislation.

●    Investment Management

Following the above-mentioned data reporting amendment, ESMA is looking forward to contributing to the development of the single rulebook with the intention of facilitating the growth of cross-border distribution of investment funds. By ensuring that the relevant technical standards are delivered within the stipulated timeline, ESMA aims to further standardise forms, templates, and procedures concerning information submission. This will ease and standardise the compliance requirements for EU-based companies.

●    Investor Protection and Intermediaries

Given the uncertainty of the market, ESMA has placed an increased emphasis on integrating financial innovation into its risk analysis. ESMA aims to improve the use of data to support the risk-based approach to supervision and support its other policy and convergence work. This can protect investors from being exposed to inaccurate data and making the wrong investment decisions.

ESMA Work Programme 2021

This Programme from ESMA lays out an ambitious schedule for the coming year, which will allow ESMA to contribute towards addressing the challenges faced by the EU market. The main aim of introducing this Programme is to enhance investor protection and promote a stable and sustainable financial market.

For a detailed understanding of the work program, please visit the ESMA website. For more information on such mandates and the latest news, follow the DataTracks blog. To know more about the ESEF solution, write to us @

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