Mr. Carlos Zarco, Head of Consumer Protection at the European Banking Authority discussed the Objectives and Tasks of the European Banking Authority
The Centre for International and Public Law (CIPL) has invited Mr. Carlos Zarco Pleguezelos, Head of Consumer Protection at the European Banking Authority who presented a paper on'The Objectives and Tasks of the European Banking Authority in the Area of Consumer Protection and Financial Innovation' Since the events of the economic crisis unfolded, regulatory authorities had to radically change their perception upon traditional regulatory actions to protect consumers. The Regulation (EU) 1093/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 November 2010 establishing a European Supervisory Authority (European Banking Authority, "EBA") required in Article 9 the establishment of a Committee on Financial Innovation, which was set up in May 2011. The main objectives of the mentioned Committee are to assist the EBA in its aims to detect and address the significant risks of harmful financial innovation, that might potentially lead to consumer detriment, by promoting transparency, simplicity and fairness in the market for consumer financial products or services, with a view on stimulating safety and soundness of markets and convergence of regulatory practices across member states. Consumer protection enhances the trust in a well-functioning market for financial services and subsequently, promotes financial stability, growth, efficiency and innovation over the long term. Several issues with respect to consumer protection in the banking sector have been widely recognised as concerns and will need to be addressed by legislation or supervisory action (among others): Mortgages and Indebtedness, Payment Protection Insurance, Access to payment accounts, Complex savings products, Transparency and Comparability of Bank Account Fees, Bank account switching, re-hypothecation, and Contracts for difference (CfDs).