Wednesday

22nd May 2019

Deal reached on pan-European financial supervisors

  • MEPs lost out on a number of their key demands (Photo: snorski)

After months of tough negotiations, the three sides of the EU triangle came to agreement on Thursday on the creation of financial supervisors intended to put an end to economic crises such as those of the last three years before they appear.

The European Commission, the European Parliament and the EU member states reached a political deal to set up a European Systemic Risk Board and three separate agencies to monitor securities, banks and insurance companies.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

Internal market commissioner Frenchman Michel Barnier called the deal "a crucial milestone".

With the new supervisory bodies, the bloc will have "the control tower and the radar screens needed to identify risks, the tools to better control financial players and the means to act fast, in a co-ordinated way," he said.

The deal reached by representatives of the three sides of the European triangle must still be approved by finance ministers of the member states, who are expected to give the go-ahead next Tuesday, and the full sitting of the European Parliament, who are likely to themselves sign off later this month.

The heart of the fight had been between the increasingly self-confident parliament who feared a weak set of agencies would not have the power to correct dangers ahead, and member states, particularly Britain, who feared a loss of sovereignty in one of the most critical areas for a national government.

In the end, a compromise has delivered to member states the ability to appeal the decisions of the new bodies, something fiercely resisted by MEPs.

Another sore point was whether the president of the European Central Bank - the chief banker for the eurozone but not for all member states - should head up the new systemic risk board.

The deal reached on Thursday will indeed make the current ECB chief, Jean-Claude Trichet the boss at the new board, but only for five years, after which a new head would be negotiated once more.

In a major victory for the national capitals, it is they who will have the critical hand on the alarm bell. The member states are to be the ones to declare that there is an emergency on the cards, not the European Commission or the parliament.

Additionally, direct oversight of companies will not be performed by the new agencies, a task to be left with national supervisors. The new agencies are to only co-ordinate actions.

Finally, the parliament was also dealt a defeat in its attempt to have a unified headquarters for the four bodies. Instead of all being based in Frankfurt, they will now be located in London, Paris and the home of the ECB.

The legislation bringing all of this into affect will be reviewed in three years.

EU top court backs Canada trade deal in ruling

The European Court of Justice ruled on Tuesday that the EU-Canada free trade agreement, and its controversial dispute settlement mechanism, is in line with the bloc's rules.

EU and Japan in delicate trade talks

The Japanese PM comes to Brussels to discuss the first results of the new EU-Japan free trade deal, plus WTO reform - a sensitive topic before he moves onto Washington to face Donald Trump.

News in Brief

  1. Poll: Denmark set to double number of liberal MEPs
  2. European brands 'breaking' chemical safety rules
  3. Report: Merkel was lobbied to accept EU top job
  4. May struggling to get Brexit deal passed at fourth vote
  5. German MPs show interest in 'Magnitsky' sanctions
  6. CoE: Rights violations in Hungary 'must be addressed'
  7. EU affairs ministers rubber-stamp new ban on plastics
  8. Private companies campaign to boost turnout in EU poll

Feature

Romania enlists priests to promote euro switchover plan

Romania is due to join the single currency in 2024 - despite currently only meeting one of the four criteria. Now the government in Bucharest is enlisting an unlikely ally to promote the euro to the public: the clergy.

Trump and Kurz: not best friends, after all

The visit of Austrian chancellor Sebastian Kurz to the White House on Wednesday showed that the current rift in transatlantic relations is deepening by the day.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Vote for the EU Sutainable Energy AwardsCast your vote for your favourite EUSEW Award finalist. You choose the winner of 2019 Citizen’s Award.
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersEducation gets refugees into work
  3. Counter BalanceSign the petition to help reform the EU’s Bank
  4. UNICEFChild rights organisations encourage candidates for EU elections to become Child Rights Champions
  5. UNESDAUNESDA Outlines 2019-2024 Aspirations: Sustainability, Responsibility, Competitiveness
  6. Counter BalanceRecord citizens’ input to EU bank’s consultation calls on EIB to abandon fossil fuels
  7. International Partnership for Human RightsAnnual EU-Turkmenistan Human Rights Dialogue takes place in Ashgabat
  8. Nordic Council of MinistersNew campaign: spot, capture and share Traces of North
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersLeading Nordic candidates go head-to-head in EU election debate
  10. Nordic Council of MinistersNew Secretary General: Nordic co-operation must benefit everybody
  11. Platform for Peace and JusticeMEP Kati Piri: “Our red line on Turkey has been crossed”
  12. UNICEF2018 deadliest year yet for children in Syria as war enters 9th year

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us