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SEC abolishes fees on investment schemes

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By Peter Egwuatu
Poised to enhance operational efficiency and boost activities in the management of Collective Investment Schemes in the nation’s capital market, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), is to abolish the annual supervision fees charged on all collective investment schemes while e-filling of monthly and quarterly returns are to be introduced.

In addition, the commission is to expose some new rules on Capital Market Funds in a couple of days as part of initiatives to create varieties of new products and deepen the capital market.

The commission said this at a meeting with Fund Managers and Trustees in Lagos convened by Collective Investment Scheme Department, where issues and challenges affecting unit trust schemes and venture capital were discussed.

Fund managers resolved at the meeting to form a trade association that would enable them build capacity and collectively deliberate on issues that affect operators and the funds they manage.

Vanguard gathered that a seven-member steering committee was set up to work out modalities leading to the formation of the trade association and election of officers within 30 days.

To serve in the committee for the association of funds Managers’are ARM Limited, IBTC Assets Management, Chapel Hill Denham, Union Trustees, Lotus Capital, FSDH and Zenith Capital.

The proposed e-filling of monthly and quarterly returns, abolition of annual supervision fees and exposure of rules on money market funds were well received by operators and commended the Commission’s efforts in its reforms of the capital market aimed at enhancing diversification of investment outlays and making the nation’s capital market internationally competitive.

Speaking at the meeting SEC’s Director (Lagos Zonal Office) who represented the Ag. Director-General, Ms. Daisy Ekineh, at the meeting said the formation of the funds managers’ trade group, like other existing trade groups in the market, is to enable them speak with one voice, aside from ensuring professionalism and standards among members.

Unlike other professionals and other operators in the market, Bello said funds managers are among the few operators in the market that have no trade group.

He added that such associations compliment the work of the regulator.

His words,“to us in the Commission, formation of funds managers’ association is very important. There are issues we might also want to communicate to them through the association. This will also engender investors’ confidence in the market as well as ensuring efficient dispute resolution involving fund managers” .The head of Collective Investment Schemes Mrs Eni Umukoro appealed to fund managers to be efficient in the management of the funds in line with Trust Deed as well as be innovative and come up with new schemes that endear retail investors to investing mutual funds.

The funds managers commended the Commission over the initiative and its various other actions to ensure market efficiency and protection of investors.

The Commission reiterated its commitment to ensure effective supervision of Collective Investment Schemes and the need for Trustees to effectively carry out their oversight responsibilities on behalf of units holders.

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