GFS LinkedIn
GFS Facebook
GFS Twitter
GFS RSS feed

Bowles: EC shared ESA chair concerns

Thursday 10 February 2011 - by Andrew Hickley

The European Commission and the Hungarian presidency shared Parliament's concerns over the procedure for appointing the heads of the new European Supervisory Authorities, according to Econ Committee chair Sharon Bowles.

Speaking to GFS News, MEP Bowles said that though the Parliament had no problem with the candidates themselves, they would have liked to test their abilities beyond the hour-long public grilling session.

Bowles said: "By and large the argument was an inter-institution one to say 'look, we've got some reservations and we don't just want worthy words and promises, we want something in writing now that says things are going to be different next time', and that's what we achieved.

"Not just from the Commission but the presidency went further than I've ever known any presidency to actually go to say we agree with everything that the Commission has said, we think the provision of resources by member states is very necessary.

"If you actually read everything that the presidency said, they were very strong and they gave much more to the parliament than in similar circumstances than presidencies would do, but largely because these concerns were shared."

The standoff lasted two days, with Internal Markets Commissioner Michel Barnier and Hungarian EU Minister Enikő Győri ultimately guaranteeing to remove age limits and upgrade remuneration packages in the next selection process.

After also securing promises that the ESAs would remain politically independent and that Parliament would have more involvement in selecting candidates in future, the Econ Committee subsequently approved the chairmen the following morning.

Drawing on the European Banking Authority chairman Andrea Enria as an example, Bowles argued that the Parliament's role as "a kind of quality control" in grilling candidates at an earlier stage would have helped calm fears that the lesser known regulators would be unable to challenge better known candidates.

"Because all these doubts were being raised about the quality of the ESA chairs and wondering how can someone who is only number 'N' in the Bank of Italy can take on [Banca d'Italia governor and Financial Stability Board chairman] Mario Draghi, well, that kind of undermines them.

Article pages: |   1  |  2  |

Post as Anonymous
  Display name
Please, enter security code

No comments yet.