Last week, the VZMD sent to the National Assembly of the Republic of Slovenia founded suggestions for the changes to apply to three articles of the Financial Instruments Market Act (ZTFI-1) as suggested by the outgoing government of the Republic of Slovenia. Despite fierce opposition of the VZMD and some members of the National Assembly, at the end of last month the Collegeof the President of the National Assembly endorsed the reading of the ZTFI-1 under urgent procedure. The VZMD therefore calls on all deputy groups to address the new act or the “constitution” of the financial instruments market in a responsible and in-depth manner despite the adopted urgent procedure, and to at least remedy the weaknesses against which the professional public together with the VZMD issued strong warnings based on concrete assessments, reviews, and suggestions.
The VZMD strongly opposed the urgent adoption procedure of the new ZTFI mainly due to the fact that the excuse of transferring provisions required by EU directives is all too often used (while lacking proper discussion) to bring forward provisions, which have nothing to do with European regulation requirements. Instead, these are “home-grown planted ideas.” With the aim to pursue particular interests of the financial industry, these ideas are usually served by the Securities Market Agency (ATVP), the Bank of Slovenia, and the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Slovenia, who clearly feel as if they were the chosen ones to protect the financial industry from minority shareholders. Therefore, in August VZMD's associates had to once again prepare the proposals of amendments and warn the public about the highly questionable provisions of the ZTFI-1 bill, which have absolutely nothing to do with the declared objectives, said to be the reason for the urgent adoption of ZTFI-1.
The proposed Article 187 of ZTFI-1 consolidates the existing outrageous practice, which enables financial intermediaries to “sell” their clients to the best bidder, as if they were bags of potatoes. The last such case was GBD d.d., which ceased to carry out its investments services and sold its clients to the Austrian BKS Bank AG. Such unacceptable acts must be prevented by incorporating an additional provision to Article 187 of the ZTFI-1, as suggested by the VZMD. But the unfair practices of charging for financial intermediaries’ services doesn’t end with “selling” minority shareholders. In fact, the financial industry took advantage of the previous so-called “alignments with European standards” to introduce “innovative” compensations, which don’t exist in European practices. Particularly outstanding is the charging for the payment of each dividend. In previous years, the VZMD identified cases where minority shareholders had to pay an amount higher than the value of the dividend for the payment of the dividend! The least that we can do in such instances is to provide minority shareholders with the possibility to combine multiple dividends into a single payment to bear the payment costs only once. In view of this, VZMD proposes a concrete supplement of Article 287 of the ZTFI-1.
It is commonly known that European requirements aren’t there to “persecute” trust accounts used by minority shareholders to mitigate to a certain extent and with professional assistance (lawyers or public notaries) the greed for “compensation” shown by the financial industry (or brokerage firms and banks). One of such possibilities is also used by Share SUPPORT at VZMD (VIDEO), which improved the position of thousands of minority shareholders! The European regulation protects and safeguards such possibilities, since Article 38 of the EU Regulation no. 909/2014 doesn’t allow for new or additional restrictions to trust accounts to those valid on 17 September 2014. In contrast with this, for the last two years the Republic of Slovenia have seen a “campaign” aimed at suppressing Share SUPPORT, which is disgracefully led by ATPV. At the VZMD, they oppose the adoption of a solution carried out under the profane pretense of adopting European directives, which isn’t compliant with the European legislation and which paints a tragic picture of the existence of minority shareholders in Slovenia! Therefore VZMD’s associates propose an adequate change of Article 296 of ZTFI-1, to stand up to further elimination of minority shareholding activities in the Republic of Slovenia.