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Guides on the EU policy on Finance.
Investment Funds in the EU
UCITS (Undertakings for Collective Investment in Transferable Securities) are investment funds that have been established in accordance with UCITS Directive (adopted in 1985). Once registered in one EU country, a UCITS fund can be freely marketed across the EU.
Union for the Mediterranean - background
The Union for the Mediterranean (UpM), created at the Paris Summit of Euro-Mediterranean Heads of State and Government on 13 July 2008, is the framework of multilateral relations between the EU and the Mediterranean non-EU countries. It complements bilateral relations, which will continue to develop under the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) and the pre-accession framework.
Union for the Mediterranean: Commission increases contribution to priority projects - briefing
On the eve of the first anniversary of the launching of the Union for the Mediterranean (Paris, 13 July 2008), the European Commission has announced an additional contribution of EUR 72 million, for 2009-2010, to the areas identified as priorities by the Euro-Mediterranean Heads of State and Government in Paris. Work will focus on the de-pollution of the Mediterranean Sea, maritime and land highways, alternative energies, with a focus on the Mediterranean Solar Plant, higher education and research and supporting investment in businesses. Part of the funds will be dedicated to support the running of the Union for the Mediterranean Secretariat. With this contribution, the total community budget dedicated since July 2008 to the priorities identified by the Union for the Mediterranean amounts EUR 90 million.
Useful information
Useful links and practical information on banking and credit institutions in the EU
Regulatory capital in the EU
The objective of the capital requirements in the EU is to have in place a comprehensive and risk-sensitive framework and to foster enhanced risk management amongst financial institutions. This is aimed at maximising the effectiveness of the capital rules to ensure continuing financial stability, maintain confidence in financial institutions and protect consumers.
Banking: Key EU directives
Key banking legislation in force in the European Union
Banking policy in the EU
Achieving an integrated market for banks and financial conglomerates is a core component of European policy in financial services sector.
Financial services - General Policy
Completing the single market in financial services is a crucial part of the European Commission's overriding objective of achieving more and better jobs in a more dynamic, innovative and attractive Europe.
Commission recommends 2012 for correction of Latvia's excessive deficit - briefing
The European Commission on 2 July concluded that Latvia is running an excessive deficit under Article 104.7 of the EU Treaty and has proposed a deadline for its correction.
Commission fine for Electrabel for implementing acquisition of Compagnie Nationale du Rhône without prior Commission approval - briefing
The European Commission has decided to impose a fine of EUR 20 million on Electrabel, an electricity producer and retailer belonging to the Suez Group (now GDF Suez) for acquiring control of Compagnie Nationale du Rhône (CNR), another electricity producer, without having received prior approval under the EU Merger Regulation. The Commission concluded that the infringement lasted for a significant period and that Electrabel should have been aware of its obligation to receive Commission approval before proceeding with the acquisition. The EU Merger Regulation requires concentrations of a European dimension to be notified to the Commission before their implementation so that the Commission can examine whether a concentration would significantly impede effective competition in the European Economic Area (EEA) or any substantial part of it. This is known as the 'standstill obligation'.
Shared Commitment for Employment - briefing
The EU will make available EUR 19 billion of planned European Social Fund expenditure to support people hit by the economic crisis. Together with the European Investment Bank Group and other partners, a new EU loans facility will be set up to provide micro-credits for those who would usually have difficulty accessing the necessary funds to set up a business or a micro-enterprise.
Financial Supervision - briefing
The European Commission has adopted a Communication on Financial Supervision in Europe. The Communication proposes a set of ambitious reforms to the current architecture of financial services committees, with the creation of a new European Systemic Risk Council (ESRC) and European System of Financial Supervisors (ESFS), composed of new European Supervisory Authorities. Legislation to embody these proposals will follow in the autumn. The Commission also invites all interested parties to submit their reactions on the Communication before 15 July.
Communication on packaged retail investment products (PRIPs) - briefing
The European Commission has committed to delivering important improvements to investor protection measures for the main investment products bought by retail investors. Inconsistencies in existing standards can be detrimental to investors and can lead to competitive distortions in the retail investment market. The Commission's conclusions, set out in the Communication on Packaged Retail Investment Products, are that product information requirements and rules on product sales need to be improved and made more coherent. The Communication outlines proposals for a new, horizontal legislative approach, drawing on the best of existing requirements and applying these to all relevant products. The Commission will now begin work on the detailed legislative proposals required for this new approach, and will provide an orientation on the work by the end of 2009.
Recommendation on directors' remuneration - briefing
The European Commission has adopted a Recommendation on the regime for the remuneration of directors of listed companies, complementing previous Recommendations 2004/913/EC and 2005/162/EC. The Commission says that an appropriate remuneration policy should ensure pay for performance and stimulate directors to ensure the medium and long term sustainability of the company. The existing Directors' remuneration Recommendation is based on the idea of pay for performance through disclosure of the remuneration policy. The new Recommendation will give further guidance on achieving this by setting out best practices for the design of an appropriate remuneration policy. To this end, it focuses on certain aspects of the structure of directors' remuneration and the process of determining directors' remuneration, including shareholder supervision. The Commission has also adopted a Recommendation on remuneration policy in the financial services sector.
Recommendation on remuneration in financial services sector - briefing
The European Commission has adopted a Recommendation on remuneration in the financial services sector. It recommends that EU Member States ensure that financial institutions have remuneration policies for risk-taking staff that are consistent with and promote sound and effective risk-management. The Recommendation sets out guidelines on the structure of pay, on the process of design and implementation of remuneration policies and on the role of supervisory authorities in the review of remuneration policies of financial institutions. The Commission has also adopted a Recommendation on directors' pay.
Directive on Alternative Investment Fund Managers (AIFMs) - briefing
The European Commission has proposed a Directive on Alternative Investment Fund Managers (AIFM). The proposed Directive forms part of the European Commission's response to the financial crisis, as set out in the Communication on Driving European Recovery. It aims to create a comprehensive and effective regulatory and supervisory framework for AIFM in the European Union. AIFM, which include the managers of hedge funds and private equity funds, managed around EUR 2 trillion in assets at the end of 2008. This is the first attempt in any jurisdiction to create a comprehensive framework for the direct regulation and supervision in the alternative fund industry. The proposal now passes to the European Parliament and Council for consideration.
E-money and cross-border payments - briefing
The European Parliament on 24 April adopted two legislative proposals revising the current rules governing cross-border payments and the conditions for issuing electronic money in the EU. Both legal texts will now be forwarded to the EU Council for final adoption. The new Regulation on cross-border payments will apply as from 1st November 2009, the final deadline for the transposition of the Payment Services Directive. As for the new E-Money Directive, the Member States should transpose the Directive by 2011 at the latest into national law.
EUR 866m European Investment Bank loans for cleaner cars - briefing
The European Investment Bank’s Board of Directors has approved loans to European-based car makers worth a total of EUR 866m to help design and build cleaner cars with lower CO2 emissions.
Financial Reporting: burden reduction for micro-entities - briefing
The European Commission has put forward a new proposal which would allow EU Member States to completely abolish financial reporting obligations for the EU's smallest companies. In a deteriorating economic climate, the new rules are designed to alleviate the regulatory burden on micro entities. The aggregate administrative burden reduction potential is estimated at around EUR 6.3 billion. The proposal, which was flagged in the European Economic Recovery Plan in November 2008, now passes to the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers for consideration.
EU support to fight the crisis in the automotive sector
The European automotive sector, with 12 million jobs depending on this strategic industry, has been hit particularly hard by the current economic crisis with new registrations down by 20 per cent and gloomy expectations for 2009. Due to its close links to other sectors and the wide spread of supply industry and vehicle trade, the negative economic effects reaches out to millions of employees in all EU Member States. In today's communication, the European Commission defends a proactive stance to support industry in their efforts to withstand the crisis, soften negative effects and ensure long-term competitiveness. Building on the European Economic Recovery Plan of 2008, it sets various measures to improve access to credit, to clarify the rules for granting state aid in the particular circumstances, to boost the demand for new vehicles through coordinated national action, to minimise social costs and retain the skilled workforce and to defend fair competition in open markets. The Commission suggests a new partnership with industry, trade unions and EU Member States in the context of the CARS 21 process to accompany the common crisis response.