PROJECT NUMBER: 0630001

Seminar: EU Banking and Financial Law: Dynamic Consolidation

29-30/Jun/2006  •  Maastricht

Introduction
Project Leader
Adriana Holtslag-Alvarez
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In May 1999, the European Commission presented a Communication entitled “Implementing the Framework for Financial Markets: Action Plan”. It became known as the Financial Services Action Plan (FSAP) and identified a wide range of issues that called for (urgent) legislative action from the EU if the full benefits of the euro and an optimally functioning financial market were to be ensured. The Action Plan was to be completed in five years – the deadline was set for the spring of 2004.

In 1999, the following priority areas for legislative measures were identified: creating a single EU wholesale market, ensuring open and secure retail markets, and finally, creating state-of-the-art prudential rules and supervision. Now, as the completion date for the FSAP has past, the future directions of European financial integration are being heavily debated. In the meantime, the European Commission has presented the outcome of its Spring 2005 consultation in a new White Paper (of December 2005).

With dynamic consolidation as the guiding principle, the Commission’s financial services policy for the next five years is set out as follows in the White Paper:

  • to consolidate dynamically towards an integrated, open, inclusive, competitive, and economically efficient EU financial market;
  • to remove the remaining economically significant barriers so financial services can be provided and capital can circulate freely throughout the EU at the lowest possible cost – with effective levels of prudential and conduct of business regulation, resulting in high levels of financial stability, consumer benefits and consumer protection;
  • to implement, enforce and continuously evaluate the existing legislation and to apply rigorously the better regulation agenda to future initiatives;
  • to enhance supervisory cooperation and convergence in the EU, deepen relations with other global financial marketplaces and strengthen European influence globally.

The objective of the seminar is to present the outcome of the FSAP and to examine the need for post-FSAP legislative initiatives. An overview will be provided of most legislative proposals adopted so far, their state of progress and degree of implementation.

Expert speakers from the Commission, academia and the financial services sector will comment on the progress made and will provide documentation of interest to policy makers, lawyers and the private sector (financial services institutions in general).

The seminar will be held in English.