The Argentine Congress has approved a comprehensive reform of the Securities Act in Argentina, which will enter in force on May 20, 2018. This outline refers to some of the main changes:
Central & South America
Today, 15th February 2018, Chambers & Partners has released their Global Legal Rankings, and we are very proud to announce Quijano & Associates’ Offshore Department has been ranked.
We have seen the sad unfolding drama of Jean Rony vs. the Commonwealth of the Bahamas. It is a sad story with no real winners. Rony was brought to and born in a country, by no act or omission of his own, by parents who were desperate to escape the dire poverty of Haiti. Years later he finds himself returned to the Bahamas and detained again for an offence he did not commit…being born and reared in a country in which he has grown; a country which was not the home of his forebears. The offence is not known to Bahamian Law but it is a serious offence nonetheless. It carries with it the burdens of too many decades, the indifference of too many politicians and the growing indignation of perhaps thousands of “near Bahamians” who sit idly by dreaming of a day on which the family of those who fashion themselves as full citizens of the Bahamas will become regularised.
The Minister of Commerce and Industries, Augusto Arosemena Moreno, announced that the establishment of headquarters of multinational companies (SEM – as per its Spanish acronym) continued with extremely good results, closing 2017 with 20 new multinational companies with regional headquarters in Panama, for a total of 146 companies adding an investment of US$1,000 million dollars and 6,000 jobs.
Arosemena highlighted that the United States continues to be the country with the largest number of companies with regional headquarters in Panama, among which he mentioned large companies such as Boeing, McKinsey & Company Inc. and VISA – that were registered this past year. High profile companies were also registered, such as Panalpina World Transport, Hankook Tire Co., and Shanghai Gorgeous Investment Development Co., among others.
Privatization of electric power generation concessionaires: creation of new 30-year concession possible
On January 26, 2018, Federal Decree 9.271 / 2018 was published, which regulates the granting of concessions in the electric sector associated with the privatization of the concession holder of a public electric power generation concession.
In summary, the Federal Government tries to stimulate the market to participate in the privatization auctions of the electric power generation public service concessionaires, by predicting that the winning companies of the auction will have the possibility of granting a new concession contract by the up to 30 years from the date of its execution.
Resolution No. 716 of 01/17/2018 was issued, which regulates the use by third parties of oil pipelines, their derivatives and biofuels, existing or to be built, whose length is less than 15 km and which do not originate in the area of production of oil and natural gas, for an adequate remuneration to the owner of the facilities.
The new Resolution maintains objective rules regarding the allocation of transport capacity of the pipelines and creates new regulatory mechanisms, such as (a) rules of free access to existing biofuel pipelines for oil and its derivatives; (b) increased transparency; (c) rules of interconnection between hauliers; (d) the possibility of a conveyor being a loader in an interconnected plant, as is already permitted in long pipelines.
Through Federal Decree 9.257 / 2017, the Federal Government decided to extend until May 31, 2018, the deadline for application for registration in the Rural Environmental Registry of all rural properties.
The adhesion to the CAR is one of the obligations established in the Forestry Code, effective since 2013, for all rural properties.
The Government has again extended the deadline for municipalities to prepare their Basic Sanitation Plans, which will now end on December 31, 2019.
By means of a decree published on December 29 last (Decree 9,254 / 2017), the Government amended Decree 7,217 / 2007, which originally provided for the preparation of Municipal Plans until December 2014 (later changed to 2015 and 2017). With the new wording, municipalities that do not have their Plans completed by the stipulated date will not have access to the federal budget resources or to financings managed by the Federal Administration, when destined to public services of basic sanitation.
On January 18 2018 an historical admission was made and reliably reported upon in a leading Bahamian daily. It was an historic admission with legal implications with little equal. Neil Hartnell, Tribune Business Editor, quoted the Lead negotiator for the Bahamas’ WTO (World Trade organization) negotiating team as asserting that the Government’s ability to protect Bahamian companies from foreign competition was “long gone.’ It was a stark admission having regard for and its source and its constitutional, legal, social and political implications. The Lead negotiator, by way of a detailed interview, further admonished businesses to think bigger for survival. Businesses were put on notice to take a more” global look at how you do business”. Look beyond this nations borders they were told and “sell to the world “.
A technical delegation from China will visit Panama to meet with representatives of the Government to examine the commercial markets of both countries, with the purpose of entering into a feasibility arrangement, prior to the negotiations of a Free Trade Agreement (FTA).
Deputy Minister of Foreign Trade, Néstor González, commented during a press conference. that a few weeks ago a similar meeting was held in Beijing with the Chinese Ministry of Commerce to advance the feasibility study.