Thursday

25th Aug 2016

Ministers time-wasting on bank union talks, MEPs say

  • Strasbourg: MEPs and ministers face an institutional battle as they try to agree rules on how to resolve failed banks (Photo: europarl.europa.eu)

MEPs have accused EU finance ministers of delaying tactics in negotiations on a single resolution fund for eurozone banks.

Deputies in Strasbourg voted on Thursday (6 February) by a strong margin to back a parliament negotiating strategy which rejects plans agreed by ministers to set up a common resolution fund to cover the costs of failed banks using an intergovernmental treaty.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

It would also establish a fully mutualised fund by 2018 - five years faster than the timetable proposed by ministers - and a centralised resolution authority.

On Wednesday (5 February) Parliament negotiators held their third round of negotiations with representatives of the Greek presidency, which has been tasked with brokering a deal on behalf of governments. But MEPs say that governments are unwilling to compromise.

"We've had three trialogues where the Greek presidency has had nothing to add beyond the Council's December position, and there are limits to how long we can go explaining our position," Sharon Bowles, who chairs the Parliament's economic affairs committee, said.

Ministers reached agreement in December on a new authority to deal with bank resolution cases, together with a common fund worth €55 billion paid by the banks themselves to cover the costs.

However, in a bid to pacify German government concerns that their taxpayers could be left liable for the bulk of the costs, ministers agreed that the governance and use of the fund should be subject to an intergovernmental treaty.

MEPs, together with European Commission officials, fear that this could lead to an unwieldy decision-making process when decisions on a bank's future will need to be made in hours rather than weeks.

For his part, financial services commissioner Michel Barnier wants the fund to be able to access financial markets and have a lender of last resort, such as the eurozone's bailout fund, if it needs additional monies.

The commissioner also called on governments to limit the scope of the inter governmental agreement to transfers from the fund, leaving its governance and the calculation of contributions in the hands of EU institutions

Although council officials believe MEPs will be more likely to accept a deal to avoid being blamed for holding up the legislation, the parliament's negotiating team continues to hang tough.

(The Parliament vote) "is a signal that the countries must change the deal considerably," said Sven Giegold, who speaks for the Green MEPs on the file. "If they don't do it, then things won't work out."

"There is no deadline. If need be, the work can be left unfinished to be picked up by the next parliament," said Bowles in a debate earlier this week. EU elections are in May and the next parliament will begin its legislative work in autumn.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. EFASpain is not a democratic state. EFA expresses its solidarity to Arnaldo Otegi and EH Bildu
  2. UNICEFBoko Haram Violence in Lake Chad Region Leaves Children Displaced and Trapped
  3. HuaweiMaking Cities Smarter and Safer
  4. GoogleHow Google Makes Connections More Secure For Users
  5. EGBAThe EU Court of Justice Confirms the Application of Proportionality in Assessing Gambling Laws
  6. World VisionThe EU and Member States Must Not Use Overseas Aid for Promoting EU Interests
  7. Dialogue PlatformInterview: "There is a witch hunt against the Gulen Movement in Turkey"
  8. ACCAACCA Calls for ‘Future Looking’ Integrated Reporting Culture With IIRC and IAAER
  9. EURidNominate Your Favourite .eu or .ею Website for the .EU Web Awards 2016 Today!
  10. Dialogue PlatformAn Interview on Gulen Movement & Recent Coup Attempt in Turkey
  11. GoogleA Little Bird Told us to Start Tweeting About Google’s Work Across Europe. Learn More @GoogleBrussels
  12. Counter BalanceThe Trans Adriatic Pipeline: An Opportunity or a Scam in the Making for Albania?

Latest News

  1. Italy earthquake is test for Renzi
  2. Let's fix EU copyright law, for innovation and creativity online
  3. French government tries to defuse burkini row
  4. EU to Turkey: Do you really want to join?
  5. US slams EU competition policies
  6. French diesel committee 'did not cover up for Renault'
  7. EU backs Greek ex-data chief over criminal charges
  8. EU must step up migrant relocation, say Italy and Greece