During an exchange of views between Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis and members of the European Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee (ECON), the former was questioned by German centre-right MEP Burkhard Balz on the feasibility of completing all existing 20 legislative proposals before the House’ shutdown for election purposes in early Spring next year. While expressing optimism, he conceded that if he had to prioritize legislative work, it would focus on finalizing the risk reduction measures (CRR, CRD, BRRD, SRMR) and the European Deposit Insurance scheme. Indeed both have been on the table for several years and sufficient progress on the RRM is in the Council a condition for moving further on EDIS. No risk sharing without risk reduction as it is called in Brussels. Further priorities for the Commission Vice-President are the ESAs review, the Pan European Pensions Product (PEPP) as well as the new initiatives on sustainable finance.
The recent money-laundering issues in some Member States have more than just raised some eyebrows at the Commission HQ. Indeed Dombrovskis also announced that his institution would be looking at how to better address the issue in the Union. Reference can be made here to a letter by Commissioners Timmermanns, Dombrovskis and Jourova to the European Supervisory Authorities (ESAs) and the Single Supervisory Mechanism (SSM) to elaborate joint proposals to reinforce AML measures.
Finally an EU debate wouldn’t be an EU debate without touching on the “B”-word. Indeed the Commissioner was questioned by British Labour MEP Neena Gill on the call by some to limit the third country equivalence decisions with view to the UK leaving the Union and the large concentration of investment firms in the City. Here he revealed that the Commission is actually analysing the investment firm review and equivalence framework with a view on how these may play a role post Brexit. Regarding the continuation of contracts, the Commissioner pointed for example to the solution of transferring UK contracts to the continent.
By Antoine Kremer, ABBL & ALFI Head of European Affairs