On 14 May 2019, the European Council announced that it has adopted the EMIR Refit Regulation at first reading. The announcement states that the Regulation adopted by Ministers amends and simplifies the European Markets Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR) “to address disproportionate compliance costs, transparency issues and insufficient access to clearing for certain counterparties.” It also notes the introduction of a new category of “small financial counterparties” which will be exempted from the obligation to clear their transactions through a central counterparty (CCP), while remaining subject to risk mitigation obligations. Smaller non-financial counterparties will also have reduced clearing obligations. In addition, the legislative measure extends by another two years (further extendable twice by an additional year) the temporary exemption from the clearing obligation of pension scheme arrangements. The announcement indicates that the Regulation will be signed in the week of 20 May 2019 and will enter into force 20 days following its publication in the Official Journal of the EU.