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ABI's Montagnon steps up EUhedgie rules fight

THE ASSOCIATION of British Insurers (ABI) has stepped up the fight againstEuropean plans to regulate the hedge fund industry with an iron fist.&nbsp; <br /><br />Peter Montagnon, the ABI&rsquo;s head of investment affairs, called for an urgent debate on the European Union&rsquo;s (EU) draft directive on alternative investment funds.<br /><br />In an interview with City A.M. he said the insurance industry has a &ldquo;central role in the capital and financial markets&rdquo;, so the EUshould sit up and listen to its views on hedge funds.<br /><br />&ldquo;The problem we&rsquo;ve got is that, as it is currently constructed, the directive just doesn&rsquo;t deliver,&rdquo; he said.<br /><br />Montagnon said the directive does have some merits such as a new fund passporting feature allowing hedge funds to be marketed Europewide. <br /><br />&ldquo;But the compliance burdens are so expensive that the passporting benefit is not going to be compensated for,&rdquo; he said.