Freedom of Information


Information relating to the Freedom of Information Act (Cap. 496), Article 17(1)

The Freedom of Information Act (Cap. 496) gives the general public the right to request documents or information from Public Authorities. The Act also lists exemptions from this right as well as placing a number of obligations on Public Authorities. In fulfilling its statutory obligations, the Malta Financial Services Authority (the Authority) is providing the following information which can be used as guidance to better inform the general public about its work and functions.

Mission, Functions and Structure

For a description of the Authority’s mission, functions and organisation structure click on the links below:

General description of main categories of documents held

The Authority holds documents falling under the following main categories:

  • Policy documents, consultative papers, reports, and related working documents on themes that fall within the functions of the Authority
  • International Agreements (Memoranda of Understanding) and related exchange of information documents
  • Personal questionnaires submitted to the MFSA by persons applying for a licence or other form of authorisation required in terms of financial services laws
  • Reports on the findings of MFSA representatives during on-site inspections carried out at the offices of licence holders
  • Reports on the findings of MFSA representatives from examinations of regular and periodic reports submitted regularly by licence holders
  • Reports of trading transactions carried out on recognised investment exchanges
  • Reports, memoranda and other documents drawn up and intended for MFSA internal use
  • Correspondence entered into between licensed entities and the MFSA (and vice-versa) in relation to regulatory and supervisory matters
  • Lists of ‘insiders’ of listed issuers and reports of trades carried out by persons discharging managerial responsibilities within an issuer as required under the Prevention of Financial Markets Abuse Act
  • Financial returns as well as audited financial statements and other financial documentation submitted by licence holders
  • Internal Procedures and check-lists relating to the regulatory units' on-site and off-site supervisory work
  • Documents pertaining to applications for admissibility to listing of securities on the Malta Stock Exchange in terms of the Listing Rules
  • Documentation relating to transfers of portfolios of insurance business
  • Documentation relating to reinsurance arrangements of insurance licence holders
  • Copies of agreements (e.g. agency agreements, underwriting and binding agreements) entered into by insurers and intermediaries
  • Outsourcing agreements entered into by insurance licence holders with third party service providers
  • Documents filed in accordance with the Companies Act
  • Dossiers related to procurement
  • Contracts, agreements, invoices, financial documentation and other similar documentation Pertaining or related to the MFSA's day-to-day administrative and management operations
  • Personal files of all employees
  • Staff Self-Development scheme files
  • Documentation related to Consumer Complaints
  • Documentation related to court cases and other litigation involving the MFSA

 

Description of all manuals and similar types of documents

  • Staff Handbook - The Staff Handbook is a document which forms part of MFSA employees’ terms and conditions of employment. It describes in detail the applicable policies and procedures on matters related to employment with the Authority.

Note:

Some of the information listed above is exempt from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act (Cap. 496). Documents obtained from licence holders and persons employed by or otherwise connected with licence holders and with applicants for business in accordance with the provisions of financial services laws constitute a category of documents which is protected by the duty of professional secrecy and cannot be made public. As regards Documents filed in accordance with the Companies Act, documents are already available for public scrutiny.

Requesting Information

A Request for Document/Information Form’ must be completed to request information from the Authority. This form can be downloaded from here (ENG or MLT version) or may be personally collected from the Authority’s premises. Completed requests for information or documents held by the Authority are to be sent by email or in writing to:

Freedom of Information Officer

Malta Financial Services Authority

Notabile Road

Attard

BKR3000

It is important that before requesting information held by the Authority under the Freedom of Information Act, a prior check be carried out to see if the required information is already published on the Authority’s website.

Fees

The Authority shall charge fees for access to documents or information under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act, and in accordance with Legal Notice 158 of 2010 - Fees charged by Public Authorities for Access to Documents Regulations:

FIRST SCHEDULE - (Regulation 3)

Requests requiring less than two man-hours of processing € 5
Requests requiring at least two man-hours of processing but less than three hours € 10
Requests requiring at least three man-hours of processing but less than four hours € 15
Requests requiring at least four man-hours of processing € 20

 

SECOND SCHEDULE - (Regulation 4) - Additional fees

Photocopies and Faxes €00.12 per page
Digital Media Cost price of the digital medium used (e.g. disc)

 

THIRD SCHEDULE - (Regulation 4) - Additional fees

Inspection of up to 1 hour € 5
Inspection of up to 2hours € 10
Inspection of up to 3 hours € 15
Inspection exceeding 3 hours € 20
In the event of multiple inspection sessions, the Public Authority shall set the fee by counting the hours the applicant spent inspecting the document

 

Effecting Payment

Following a request for information, the applicant will be duly informed of the fees that the Authority intends to charge. Applicants can effect payment for fees in respect of documents/information requested, by cheque payable to the Malta Financial Services Authority, by cash or by Credit Card. A receipt will be issued on receipt of payment.

Queries

Queries regarding the Authority’s approach to the freedom of information should be directed to the Freedom of Information Officer on (+356) 2548 5386 or by email.

Complaints

In the event that the applicant is not in agreement with the Authority’s handling of the request, the applicant may lodge a complaint in line with the Authority’s Internal Complaints Procedure.  In this regard a Complaint Form must be used to lodge a complaint with the Authority. This form can be downloaded from here (ENG or MLT version) or can also be collected from the Authority’s  premises. Completed Complaint forms may be sent by email or by normal mail addressed to:

Freedom of Information Officer

Malta Financial Services Authority

Notabile Road

Attard

BKR3000

The Freedom of Information Act entitles the applicant to address complaints or to seek investigation and review by the Information and Data Protection Commissioner, as the case may be, following recourse to the Authority’s Internal Complaints Procedure

Contact Information

Queries regarding the Authority’s approach to the Freedom of Information should be directed to the Freedom of Information Officer on (+356) 2548 5386, via email or in writing to the:

Freedom of Information Officer

Malta Financial Services Authority

Notabile Road

Attard

BKR3000