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A long and winding road: Implementation of EU law in Poland - examples in the financial sector

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The European Union strives to ensure that all member states adopt similar regulations concerning the financial sector. It uses directives as a tool to accomplish that. Unlike EU regulations, EU directives are not applicable directly in local jurisdictions. Each member state has to transpose them into its own legal system. This causes some difficulties.


Many member states can’t keep up with the pace of EU legislation. In the case of Poland, the biggest delay has been 4 years. The Markets in Financial Instruments Directive was adopted on April 21, 2004, and was required to be transposed by local jurisdictions by January 31, 2007. To that end, Poland adopted 13 different legal acts. Most of them came into force on time, but the necessary amendments to the Act on Trading in Financial Instruments came into force as late as October 21, 2009. Two statutory instruments implementing MiFID came into force a month later, on November 20 and 23, 2009.

The delay in transposition of MiFID in Poland was caused in part by parliamentary elections, but the most important reason was that the Polish President decided to request that the Constitutional Tribunal review whether some of the new provisions infringed the Constitution. After 10 months, the tribunal ruled that they did, and the act had to be amended.

Read the full article published in The American Investor >

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