UK Banks Call for Care, Clarity and Costs to be Understood

The British Bankers’ Association hosted a meeting with the new EU Internal Market Commissioner Michel Barnier to stress the importance of the UK as an international financial centre.

The meeting covered:

  • The cumulative impact of regulatory change.
  • The need for international co-ordination and co-operation which reflects that banking is an international industry operating across national boundaries.
  • The importance of the EU and the need not to operate a ‘go-it-alone’ policy.

BBA’s chief executive officer (CEO) Angela Knight said: “I am very pleased to be meeting Commissioner Barnier for the first time and for the opportunity to discuss some of the key issues facing the banking industry in the UK. Our members are concerned that the total cost of measures currently being devised to prevent future banking problems remain un-costed and there is a prevailing assumption – quite wrongly in my view – that proposed new rules will only hit the banks. The real issue is that changes may have the effect of making it more difficult for banks to lend to businesses and individuals. This, in turn, will not help the economy recovery.

“Banks support the need for change but we are concerned that, in all the emotion around the international financial crisis, we are in danger of over-engineering stability – and making too many changes at a rush – at the expense of recovery and future growth in the wider economy,” she added.


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