‘ UK Commissioner Has Power to Control Bankers Pay Awards Removed ‘

#AceFinanceNews – BRUSSELS – September 26 – The European Commission has played down suggestions that it had deliberately stripped the UK’s commission candidate of responsibility for policing the EU’s bank bonus rules.

Officials with Commission President designate, Jean-Claude Juncker, said that the decision to put bank bonus rules in the hands of the bloc’s justice commissioner had been taken before Jonathan Hill, a British Conservative, had been nominated for the post of financial services chief.

“This was a decision that was made when forming the justice portfolio,” Juncker’s spokeswomen Natasha Bernaud told reporters on Friday (26 September).

“This was a decision that was taken and made public on 10th September…so it’s really nothing new,” she added.

Under the proposed division of competences within the EU executive, Hill will be responsible for financial stability, financial services and capital markets. Aside from financial sector regulation, the portfolio will include the completion of the EU’s ambitious banking union legislation.

Meanwhile, oversight of the bank bonus rules will be part of the portfolio of Czech politician Vera Jourova, the proposed justice commissioner, in the context of company law.

The UK is currently embroiled in a court battle with the European Commission over the bank bonus rules, one of three legal challenges to financial services rules that the UK has lodged with the European Court of Justice in the last three years.

The EU’s institutions passed several laws aimed at curbing excessive executive pay in the 2009-2014 term, instigated by outgoing single market commissioner Michel Barnier.

Under the latest capital requirements directive adopted in 2013, bank bonuses are capped at the same level of salary, although banks are permitted to pay bonuses worth up to twice basic salary levels following a shareholder vote.

However, Bernaud stated that the capital requirements rules for banks will form part of Hill’s portfolio.

Source:

#AFN2014

#bankers, #british, #brussels, #conservative, #eu, #financial, #services

‘ EU Countries Planning to Tell Russia They Will Not Rewrite Ukraine Trade-Pact ‘

#AceFinanceNews BRUSSELS September 27 EU countries are planning to tell Russia it has no say on changing the Ukraine trade treaty despite its demand to rewrite the text.

The joint declaration, by the EU Council and European Commission, is to say the trade pact: “is a bilateral [EU-Ukraine] agreement and any adaptations to it can only be made at the request of one of the parties and with the agreement of the other”.

It notes Ukraine should “continue the process of envisaged reforms and economic modernisation” related to Titles III, V, VI and VII, of the pact.

It also says Ukraine should go ahead with “adequate preparation for the implementation of Title IV”.

Titles III, V, VI, and VII of the pact spell out reforms in the areas of justice and security, economic affairs, financial and anti-fraud matters, and institution-building.

Title IV deals with trade and the mutual lifting of tariffs on EU and Ukrainian exports.

The EU declaration is to be published in Brussels on Monday (29 September) by ministers at general affairs council.

Ministers will the same day adopt a legal act saying the bulk of the treaty is to be implemented “without delay”, but that article IV is to be implemented on 1 January 2016.

EU countries are also planning to extend “autonomous trade measures” – low or zero-rate tariffs for exports of most Ukrainian goods to Europe – from November until January 2016. But the legal text is not yet ready for adoption.

The delay of Title IV is in line with an EU-Russia-Ukraine deal on 12 September.

It comes after Russia threatened to impose trade sanctions on Ukraine on grounds it will be flooded by cheap EU goods re-exported from Ukraine.

The declaration on the “bilateral” mechanism for altering the treaty comes after Russia also demanded a role in altering the content of the text in the run-up to 2016.

Source:

#AFN2014

#brussels, #eu-russia-ukraine, #europe, #russia, #trade-pact, #ukraine, #ukrainian