Amendments to the Companies Act (Register of Beneficial Owners) Regulations


The Register of Beneficial Owners Regulations (“BO Regulations”) have been amended on 12th July 2019. This amendment is being introduced inter alia, to seek to transpose certain provisions of the Fifth EU Anti-Money Laundering Directive into Maltese law.

The major amendment introduced to the BO Regulation is in relation to the accessibility to the beneficial ownership register. Currently information on beneficial ownership is held by the Malta Business Registry and accessible amongst others by competent authorities and persons who have a legitimate interest.  In so far as companies are concerned the access of the information on the beneficial ownership of companies is, by virtue of these amendments, to be freely accessible by members of the general public. This specific amendment will come into force on the 1st January 2020.

In case of trusts the disclosure of the beneficial ownership registry shall remain to be subject to ‘legitimate interest’.

The amendment to the BO Regulations impose that information is provided by the Ultimate Beneficial Owners (UBO) to the company/ies in which they hold a beneficial interest. The Regulations bind the UBO to provide this information promptly, without the need for such request to come from the company. Having said the above the company still has its own obligation to obtain such information from the shareholders or UBOs. This backs up the already existing penalties that are applicable to beneficial owners in case of failure to provide such information to the company. Now, it appears that UBOs are also liable to penalties where they fail to voluntarily provide the information even without the request from the company.

E&S can provide you with the necessary support in relation to the above matter. Do not hesitate to contact us on, should you require further information.

Chief Operating Officer

Dr. Mariella Baldacchino

Dr. Mariella Baldacchino currently sits on the Board of E&S Consultancy Ltd and RES Malta Ltd, authorised corporate service providers in Malta, and is the Managing Partner at E&S Law, a Law firm based in Malta. E&S Consultancy, RES Malta Ltd and E&S Law operate within the E&S Group. Dr. Baldacchino, a lawyer by profession with over 12 years of involvement with international businesses set ups in Malta, is responsible for the corporate and legal team at E&S Group. She is also responsible for the operations of the E&S Group including overseeing day to day operational functions and implementing decisions and strategies of the E&S Group. She read law at the University of Malta in 2005 and finalised a Master in ‘Diritto Privato Europeo’ at the University of La Sapienza Rome in 2006. In 2006 she joined a tax firm in Malta, whereby she was responsible for a varied international based client portfolio, which developed her experience on efficient tax planning, corporate law matters and client relations. In 2011, she took a senior role within a major audit firm heading the Legal Team. Her responsibilities were managing and supervising the legal team, as well as assisting with legal expertise and ad hoc problem-solving. Mariella joined E&S Group in 2016 as Senior Manager for the Corporate and Legal Department.

Mariella is fluent in English, Italian and Maltese.

Phone:+356 2010 3020

Chief Business Development Officer

Dr. Deborah Vella

Deborah graduated as Doctor of Laws in 2015, admitted to the bar in 2017 and has been working with E&S Group for the past six years within the Corporate and Legal Department. Her main areas of practice are corporate and commercial law. Deborah also takes particular interest in gaming, employment, residency matters and intellectual property issues. In the professional field, she is subscribed as a member of the Malta Chambers of Advocates and the Malta Institute of Taxation where she has read the Professional Certificate of Taxation. In 2017, she took a managerial role within E&S Group heading the corporate team. Her responsibilities were managing and supervising the corporate team, as well as assisting with legal expertise and client relationships together with the Board of Directors. In the first quarter of 2019 Deborah continued to exercise her abilities and corporate expertise by heading also the Corporate Legal Team.

In light of the above, the Directors have promoted Deborah to be the Chief Business Development Manager of E&S Group. Whilst she will continue to be of support towards the corporate and legal team within the firm, her main focus will shift to being the interface with top tier clients and ensuring that such are serviced in the best possible way. Deborah will nonetheless continue to oversee and supervise all that is related to gaming, employment and IP. As the company’s CRM she will also be engaged in a business development role which involves the planning and executing of offline business development and marketing for the Group.

Deborah is fluent in English and Maltese with a proficient understanding of Italian.

Deborah specializes in corporate, commercial, restructuring, gaming, tax, IP and private client matters.

Phone:+356 2010 3020

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