EU banking union sets in place the basis of a multi-speed Europe

22-May-2013 @ 13:00

Kay Swinburne Kay Swinburne

Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

An agreement reached on the EU Banking Union is a 'seminal' moment that sets in place a mechanism for a multi-speed EU, Kay Swinburne MEP said today as MEPs held a vote on a single supervisor for Eurozone banks.

MEPs today voted on a plans to create a Single Supervisory Mechanism, making the European Central Bank responsible for ensuring financial stability of most banks within the Eurozone.

The proposals enable some countries to go ahead with greater integration as they attempt to resolve the currency crisis, whilst providing protections to ensure that those countries outside the Euro are not adversely affected. In particular, decisions made in the European Banking Authority (which sets out the rule book for banks in the EU Single Market) will be subjected to a double majority voting system that will require a simple majority of both those countries participating in the Euro, and those who do not - so that Euro countries are not able to 'caucus'.

MEPs today held a vote setting out their position on the negotiations. Although the main political issues have been agreed between the parliament and national governments, a final vote approving the measure was postponed pending a vote in the German Parliament.

Speaking in the debate ahead of today's vote, Dr Swinburne, European Conservatives and Reformists group economics spokesman, said:

"The agreement to establish the Single Supervisory Mechanism and the accompanying adjustments to the European Banking Authority are seminal.

"They set in place, within the current EU treaty, a mechanism for a multi-speed Europe.

"The Euro zone can push ahead with a more integrated system that they have agreed is necessary to support the single currency.

"Whilst those members states who are signed up to join the euro have been accommodated on a voluntary system that they can choose to join when they deem it suitable for their unique situations.

"While the rights of those outside of the euro are preserved via a new dual voting system that requires a simple majority of those participants inside the single supervisory mechanism and a separate simple majority of those member states who choose to remain outside of it.

"Most fundamentally, these two simple majority votes must come together to form one qualified majority vote over all, so that the European single market is protected.

"This agreement sets a template for exactly how a renegotiated European Union could work. A European Union that recognises that all member states are different, both economically and culturally, yet can still work together to achieve an overall outcome that everyone can be comfortable with.

"The City of London is the jewel of the single market with the financial services it provides and facilitates being not just of benefit to the UK, but to the entire EU. Ensuring continued participation within the single market, on equitable terms, that allow a global financial centre to operate is of the utmost importance to all companies and individuals within the EU. It is in no one's interest for that activity to move outside Europe."

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