The Eighth EFR Stakeholder Round Table on 22/ 23 March 2017 in Brussels
The Eighth EFR Stakeholder Round Table on 22/ 23 March 2017 in Brussels brought together more than 40 top-level EU- and national level officials, central bankers, supervisors, policy makers and EFR Members, Chairmen and Chief Executives of leading European banks and insurance companies, for a lively closed-door debate on 'Delivering innovation and stability for Europe in challenging times'. Keynote speeches and introductory remarks were held from, inter alia, high-level representatives from supervisory authorities, regulators and international organisations. In three panel sessions, the EFR Stakeholder Round Table focussed on 'Growth and Innovation', 'Cyber Security' and 'Regulatory challenges to the Digital reality'.
Publication of EFR Report: The European Financial Landscape in 2017
On the occasion of the Eighth EFR Stakeholder Round Table, the EFR published the Report: 'The European Financial Landscape in 2017'. Through this report, the EFR contributes to the debate on key economic and financial issues, shares its views with EU policymakers and makes specific recommendations.
The economic prospects for the year 2017 show positive indicators for growth and recovery, but it will be a year with many challenges and political uncertainties, which might impact growth and recovery. The EU should keep its focus on coordinating the policies of the internal market and proactively work towards collectively shaping it in the Member States' common interest, and ensure continued international regulatory cooperation. The EU has also to keep the focus on growth and investment, responsible fiscal policies, and structural reforms to increase competitiveness.
- Long-term investment is essential for the European economy to kick start sustainable growth. More policy measures are needed to enable growth. For instance, greater transparency around infrastructure investments is important to foster market discipline, stabilise the long-term investment environment and increase accessibility for investors. Restoring a securitisation market in Europe through an appropriate regulatory treatment is also essential.
- Digitalisation brought on by new technologies is central to the change of the fast-evolving global economy. Europe needs to lead on the digital transformation. Transforming the digital landscape should result in a competitive environment, benefit customers and boost the EU's growth potential. Better cyber risk data collection and information sharing should be encouraged to increase cyber resilience.
- Concerning sustainable finance and climate change, EFR and its Members are committed to help deliver the Paris Agreement and the EFR has done proposals on where action at EU level would help manage the transition. The financial sector should have the right framework to support an early and predictable transition to a low-carbon economy, to support investment in green technologies and to ensure that growth can be financed in a sustainable way.
- Finally, it is time to look holistically at the current prudential framework and determine whether it suits what Europe needs to support economic growth and its competitiveness. Similarly, all new rules must work consistently and coherently to support the growth objective. It is important that Europe speaks credibly and with one voice in global fora to better promote its economic and financial interests on the basis of the 'same risk, same rule' principle.
More than ever time is of the essence. The strength of an economy has a large bearing on the success of its financial services firms, which play a key role in facilitating economic growth.