EU seeks breakthrough on banking union

Bernd Riegert, Deutsche Welle, 12.12.2012

Link to original article


Shortly before this week's EU summit, the bloc's finance ministers are once again tackling the issue of how to create an effective banking union. Agreement on a common supervisory body would be a good place to start. […]

The roadmap to banking supervision by the end of 2013, agreed to at the EU summit in October, is only the first step on a long road toward a full banking union, according to Janis Emmanouilidis, political analyst at the European Policy Center in Brussels.

"That does not mean that we're over the hill yet," he told DW. "The main issue is going to be dealing with the fundamental deficits in the economic and currency union - the imbalance between a currency union and an unfinished economic union. That work has been started, but it is certainly going to take longer. So is implementing it." […]

By 2014, the banking union will consist of all 6,000 banks in the European Union. There is, however, debate over which banks would fall under the regulatory pervue of the supervisory board: should it include only the healthy, solvent lenders, or the ailing banks too, including those that misjudged investments in Spain, Ireland, Slovenia and Greece?

Emmanouilidis sees plenty of potential conflicts brewing. "Key players like Germany, Finland and the Netherlands have said that support made directly to banks will only be provided to the banks that get into trouble in the future - not the ones already in trouble," he said. "They're trying to separate old problems from future problems. There is a serious discussion going on with paying countries like Germany, Finland and the Netherlands on one side and potential receiving countries like Spain on the other." […]

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