The burden of proof is reversed, the depositary and will be responsible for loss of assets under custody unless he can prove that the loss is the result of an external event, beyond its reasonable control and the inevitable consequences. The proposal adopted, which evokes a "reasonable control" of custodian, is less severe than the original text. The depository will retain the option of using the sub-delegation, initially excluded, to transfer its contractual responsibilities, which will be accompanied by due diligence work and reporting to the authorities further.
The lobbying industry seems to have paid to alleviate the new obligations. The profession can still expect some changes coming about the chain of responsibility, because it seems that the Commission expected the adoption of the Directive before opening the ISA site clarifying the responsibilities of the holders of UCITS, and this is likely to make changes at least as demanding.
The vote by the European Parliament Directive ISA shows how the negotiations were laboring among the proponents of a regulatory status quo and those seeking tighter control of the financial industry. As usual all the European players have found a compromise of the confession of all is a "lesser evil". But unlike the UCITS IV Directive which was carried by the entire profession, this directive was made reluctantly ISA and its scope is thereby limited. While hedge funds are going to have a regulatory framework in Europe but it is relatively flexible. Nevertheless, the establishment of ESMA is a breakthrough that will require the supervisor to give the EU means to realize its ambitions to acquire a globally recognized authority. The problematic status of depositories is idle and this will invite themselves to the agenda of the future Directive UCITS V. The vote of the Directive ISA is a first step and the path is far from complete.