Luxembourg joins call to strengthen EU banking sector
A Luxembourg financial services lobby has teamed up with European counterparts to strengthen the sector across the EU, as the bloc struggles to fulfil its promise of creating a unified capital market across its 27 members.
Luxembourg for Finance (LFF) has agreed to work more closely together with other groups that promote finance in their countries across Europe, including the Berlin Finance Initiative, Italian Banking, Finance Estonia and Paris Europlace, LFF said on Wednesday.
The agreement was to set up a so-called ‘roundtable’ between the finance promoters, aimed at bolstering financial services across the EU by improving the competitiveness of the bloc’s financial industry, as well as building relationships with financial centres outside of Europe.
“The challenges facing the industry, including the digital and climate transitions, as well as the need to deepen the EU single market for financial services, are issues which are common to us all and we all gain from working together towards finding solutions,” Nicolas Mackel LFF CEO said.
Europe launched its plans for a Capital Markets Union in 2015 to do away with barriers between countries that continue to exist decades after the introduction of the single currency. This has weakened European banks, which took far longer to recover from the global financial crisis than their US peers.
An EU-wide campaign launched in 2019 – Markets4Europe – is similarly promoting the policy goals laid out by Brussels has set. Set to run until 2024, the campaign is backed by notables such as Deutsche Bank CEO Christian Sewing and Italian ex-prime minister Enrico Letta.
The roadmap says it is important to align the rules across the EU in insolvency and securities law, as well as improving withholding tax relief and refund procedures to prevent investor double taxation. The campaigners also advocate for special tax regimes for starts-ups and first-time issuers of equity.