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Ireland mulls hedge fund tax-transparent vehicle

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IRELAND - The Irish parliament could vote on a change of legislation to introduce a type of tax transparent vehicle which would allow investments in alternative asset classes like hedge funds.

The Financial Services Regulatory Authority and the Dublin Funds Industry Association, DFIA, are working on a draft of a bill for the creation of a pension vehicle to comprise alternative investments, which are currently not included in the common contractual fund vehicle, said the DFIA’s Paul Dobbyn.

The CCF was launched in Ireland last year to attract multinational companies’ pension business. It competes with Luxembourg’s fond commun de placement, or FCP.

Dobbyn said a group of members of the DFIA, the representative body for the International Investment Fund community in Ireland, had split into two unofficial working groups considering the legal and tax aspects of a non-UCITS, Undertakings for the Collective Investment of Transferable Securities.

Dobbyn, who is also a partner of law firm A&L Goodbody, said the parliament was not likely to consider the draft in the current session, but could do so in the next session after the summer holidays.

He told IPE he saw the creation of the more flexible non-UCITS CCF as a natural follow-up to the UCITS CCF.

“We have always known that once we created a UCITS CCF there would be demand for a non-UCITS CCF as we know that the former has investment strategies which are more restrictive and conservative,” he said.

The financial regulator is “comfortable” about the possible change in legislation and the cabinet also seems to agree, Dobbyn said, adding he felt “quite optimistic”.

The new product is not necessary a way to lure investors from Luxemburg he added. “This is a quite unique product, designed for multinationals.”

The press office for the Luxembourg government said it was not immediately able to say whether a non-UCITS pension vehicle was being considered in the Grand Duchy as well.

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